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April 26, 2019

Speech by the Governor of Tokyo, Yuriko Koike, at the First Extraordinary Session of the Tokyo Metropolitan Assembly, 2019

In opening the first extraordinary session of the Tokyo Metropolitan Assembly in 2019, I make the following remarks with the utmost respect. On April 30, the Ceremony of Abdication of His Imperial Majesty the Emperor at the Seiden (State Hall) will be held. As Governor of Tokyo, Japan’s capital, I would like to extend my very best wishes on this occasion.

“Peace at home and abroad. Peace on earth and in heaven.”
The word Heisei, the name given to the current era, implies that peace will be achieved in Japan, abroad, and even in heaven and on earth. For our country, Heisei was a peaceful era with no war. I feel that the words His Majesty gave with such emotion, expressing his relief that his reign is coming to an end without having seen the country at war, resonated particularly deeply in the hearts of the people of Tokyo and Japan.

At the same time, Heisei was an era in which major disasters occurred one after another. In such times, His Majesty always showed concern for those affected and offered them encouragement. Tokyo was also struck by disasters a number of times, including a volcanic eruption on Miyakejima Island and severe typhoon damage on Oshima Island. His Majesty the Emperor not only gave thoughtful words of concern to island evacuees, but he also visited both islands to offer encouragement directly to island residents working to rebuild. I believe that all of the island residents were able to feel immeasurable courage and hope for recovery. On behalf of the people of Tokyo, I would like to express our most heartfelt gratitude for the warm kindness of His Majesty, who places great importance on being close to the people, and for His Majesty’s many achievements spanning more than three decades.

With profound respect in my heart for His Majesty, who diligently carried out his official duties, constantly wishing for the peace of the nation and happiness of the people, as leader of the capital of the peaceful nation of Japan, I will work with the people of Tokyo, constantly devoting efforts to the growth of Tokyo and Japan. Along with the people of Tokyo, I sincerely hope that His Majesty continues to watch over our efforts to open up a bright future, and enjoys peaceful days in good health with Her Majesty the Empress, with whom he celebrates 60 years of marriage this month.

This concludes my remarks.

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