Empress Masako said on the occasion of her 59th birthday Friday that she felt deeply moved as a member of the imperial family after marrying Emperor Naruhito in June 1993.
I have gone through many times of joy as well as times of sorrow. The empress said in a statement issued by the Imperial Household Agency, I would like to express my heartfelt gratitude to the emperor and many others who have supported and watched over me every step of the way.
In October the imperial couple visited Okinawa for the first time since the emperor's accession to the chrysanthemum throne in 2019 to commemorate the 50th anniversary of the southern island prefecture's reversion to Japan from U.S. rule.
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