TOKYO -- Princess Mako, a niece of Emperor Naruhito, turned 30 on Oct. 23, three days before her marriage to university classmate Kei Komuro, also 30.
With Princess Mako set to leave the imperial household upon marriage, her 30th birthday is her last as an Imperial Family member. It is said that no birthday events have been planned for the princess this year, to prevent coronavirus transmissions.
Ceremonies and events that usually accompany the marriage of female members of the Imperial Family are not being held, and an aide commented that the princess was "quietly preparing for her marriage."
Princess Mako visited Emperor Naruhito and Empress Masako at the Imperial Palace on the evening of Oct. 22 to report her marriage. According to the Imperial Household Agency, their talk lasted for about 1 hour and 10 minutes. Princess Aiko, the daughter of the Emperor and Empress, joined them partway through, creating an amiable atmosphere.
On the morning of Oct. 26, Princess Mako will submit her marriage registration through a member of the Imperial Household Agency. She will leave Akasaka Estate in Tokyo's Minato Ward, and in the afternoon will hold a news conference together with Komuro. The following day at the agency, her withdrawal from the Imperial Family will be registered in the Imperial Family register, or "kotofu."
Princess Mako's attendance at events this year has decreased due to the coronavirus pandemic, as was the case last year. Nevertheless, she did participate in some, such as the selection of the president's prize at the Japan Traditional Kogei Exhibition sponsored by the Japan Kogei Association, whose presidency she holds, and she heard explanations delivered by video. Kogei refers to several categories of traditional Japanese crafts.
The princess also serves as honorary president of the Japan Tennis Association and observed televised Olympic and Paralympic tennis matches. She is said to have been impressed by the performances of the athletes.
According to the Imperial Household Agency, Princess Mako will give up both presidential titles on Oct. 26. Her younger sister, Princess Kako, will take over the position of honorary president of the Japan Tennis Association.
Princess Mako was earlier diagnosed with complex post-traumatic stress disorder (C-PTSD) following public slander after she became unofficially engaged to Komuro in 2017. Regarding her recent physical condition as her marriage approaches, an aide said, "There is nothing in particular to announce."
(Japanese original by Takeshi Wada, Tokyo City News Department, and Nao Yamada, Digital News Center)