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Japan PM Abe thanks Akihito on behalf of people

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AP Tokyo
Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, representing the people at Emperor Akihito's abdication ceremony, thanked the outgoing emperor for seeking peace and happiness for his people and for reaching out to them in times of difficulty.
Abe said the emperor always shared the people's happiness and hardship.
Akihito's reign runs through midnight Tuesday, when his son, Crown Prince Naruhito, becomes the new emperor.
Abe and his ultra-conservative supporters, who seek to expand Japan's military role, have sometimes seemed irked by Akihito's repeated reminders of Japan's wartime past.
Japan's Emperor Akihito has expressed his wishes that the new era of his son, Emperor-to-be Naruhito, brings "peace and happiness" to people in Japan and around the world.
Akihito announced Tuesday that he is abdicating, handing the Chrysanthemum throne to Crown Prince Naruhito. Naruhito's new era of Reiwa, which means beautiful harmony, begins at midnight Tuesday.

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First Published: Apr 30 2019 | 3:40 PM IST

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