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Japan's Princess Kako turns 26, supports national sign language performance by students

Princess Kako, the youngest daughter of Crown Prince Akishino, who celebrated her 26th birthday on Dec. 29, is seen at the Akasaka Estate in Tokyo's Minato Ward on Dec. 4, 2020. (Photo courtesy of the Imperial Household Agency)

TOKYO -- Japan's Princess Kako, the youngest daughter of Crown Prince Akishino (Fumihito) and Crown Princess Kiko, celebrated her 26th birthday on Dec. 29.

    Princess Kako listened to explanations by infectious disease experts in an online informational session, and has sent out video messages for events she had been scheduled to attend, while activities have been limited amid the spread of the novel coronavirus.

    According to the Imperial Household Agency, Princess Kako has attended coronavirus-related information sessions with her parents up to 29 times since May. She has asked questions with enthusiasm, and there were also times where she would express feelings of appreciation to lecturers who were fulfilling their respective roles in the field.

    The princess also sent a video message that was used in the opening ceremony of a national sign language performance contest for high school students, which was held via the internet in September. She also watched the performances online. Voices such as "Students gained confidence as Princess Kako watched them perform," have apparently been heard from schools that partook in the competition.

    Princess Kako graduated from International Christian University (ICU) in March 2019. She has not taken on a job, but has been performing official duties.

    (Japanese original by Takeshi Wada, City News Department)

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