Japan's Princess Mako announces engagement to university classmate, will relinquish royal status

The pair, both 25, graduated from Tokyo's International Christian University.

"I was first attracted to his bright smiles that seemed like the sun", she blushed.

The two became close as they sat near each other during a briefing session held in 2012 at the university for a student exchange program, according to the press conference.

The 26-year-old princess will marry a commoner named Kei Komuro.

According to Japanese royal laws, women are not allowed succeed to Japan's throne which means that Princess Mako will lose her royal status once she weds the 25-year-old Komuro, a legal assistant who loves playing the jazz piano.

The Imperial Household Agency announced on Sunday the informal engagement of Princess Mako, the first grandchild of the Emperor and Empress, to former university classmate and commoner Kei Komuro.

On this, Princess Mako said, "From my childhood, I have spent my life, bearing in mind that when I get married, I would lose my Imperial Family member status".

Bodyguards from the Imperial Guard are supposed to accompany Princess Mako when she goes out.


Over time the princess learnt that he is a 'sincere, strong-minded, hard worker'. Komuro replied Princess Mako "has been quietly watching over me like the moon".

Komuro is now working in a law firm while studying business law at Hitotsubashi University. She now works as a researcher at a museum at the University of Tokyo. But due to the unfortunate torrential rain that flooded northern Kyushu that month, the royal family chose to postpone the announcement.

In 2016, 83-year-old Emperor Akihito announced publicly that poor health following heart surgery and prostate cancer had made him unfit to properly fulfill his duties as emperor of the country.

He now works at a law firm and is still studying business law at the Hitotsubashi University's gradual school.

Princess Mako's engagement is expected to be announced in the coming weeks, after which an official date will be set.

Mako is the eldest daughter of Prince Akishino, the second son of the Emperor and second in line to the Chrysanthemum Throne after Prince Naruhito.

Prince Hisahito is now third in line to the throne after his uncle, Crown Prince Naruhito, and his father Prince Akishino.


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