Emperor, Empress Depart for U.K.; State Banquet, Trip to Alma Mater Scheduled

The Yomiuri Shimbun
The Emperor and Empress depart for the United Kingdom from Haneda Airport on Saturday.

The Emperor and Empress departed for the United Kingdom on Saturday to make an official visit.

This is the first time since 1998 for an emperor and empress to visit the United Kingdom as state guests. For the couple, it is their second overseas international goodwill trip since the Emperor took the throne. The first was a trip to Indonesia in June last year.

The Emperor and Empress attended a departure ceremony at around 10:50 a.m. at Haneda Airport in Tokyo, where they were greeted by Crown Prince Akishino, Crown Princess Kiko and other dignitaries.

After arriving in London on Saturday afternoon local time, the Imperial couple on Tuesday will attend a banquet hosted by King Charles III and Queen Camilla. The Emperor will lay a wreath at the burial place of Queen Elizabeth II on Thursday.

The Emperor and Empress will visit the University of Oxford, where they once studied, on Friday, the last day of their stay. The couple will arrive back in Japan the following day.