Emperor Naruhito greets public in Japan parade marking enthronement

Around 30,000 people attended a national festival that came after Japan's Emperor Naruhito completed his ascension to the Chrysanthemum throne

Around 30,000 people attended a national festival that came after Japan's Emperor Naruhito completed his ascension to the Chrysanthemum throne

Security forces lined the entire length of the route in double rows, keeping close watch as the slow-moving parade passed by, flanked by police on motorbikes.

"We came here because it's a once in a lifetime opportunity and we wanted to celebrate this event", she said, flanked by her friend Chiyoe Ito, 70.

Emperor Naruhito ascended the throne after his father Akihito abdicated, marking the first time in two centuries that an emperor had stepped down during their reign. "I concentrated so much on taking a photo, I barely looked with my own eyes".

"This will be my last chance to see an imperial parade", added Yukari Oshita, also in her 60s, as she waited near the Imperial Palace.

Japanese Emperor Naruhito and Empress Masako were driven through the streets of central Tokyo on Sunday as part of festivities marking his enthronement.

The parade was originally scheduled for October 22 but postponed after more than 80 people were killed when Typhoon Hagibis slammed into Japan and caused widespread damage.

Hours before the scheduled start of the parade, long queues formed at dozens of security checkpoints.

The emperor wore a tailcoat and Empress Masako a white dress and a tiara that sparkled in the sunshine.

"And Empress Masako is someone who can be a role model for modern women with full-time jobs", she said.

Under a cloudless blue sky, Emperor Naruhito and Empress Masako, Harvard-educated former diplomat, waved from an open-top Toyota Century limousine, which cruised through streets lined with spectators and police.

She has struggled to adjust to cloistered royal life, and was diagnosed with an adjustment disorder that led to a scaling back of her public appearances.

She won plaudits for her assured performance when the USA president, Donald Trump, became the first foreign leader to meet the new emperor, winning praise in particular for her ability to converse in fluent English.

About 16.1 billion yen ($147 million) has been earmarked for succession-related ceremonies throughout the year, including Sunday's parade, up 30% from Akihito's succession three decades ago.

Japanese Emperor Naruhito thanked tens of thousands of well-wishers who gathered outside the palace Saturday to congratulate his enthronement at a ceremony organized by conservative political and business groups.

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