Japan's Prince Mikasa, oldest imperial family member, dies at 100
Japanese Prince Mikasa waves to well-wishers during a public appearance for a New Year celebration at the Imperial Palace in Tokyo, Japan, in this photo taken by Kyodo, January 2, 2015. Kyodo/via REUTERS
Get the Pulse of the Market with StreetInsider.com's Pulse Picks. Get your Free Trial here.
TOKYO (Reuters) - The 100-year-old uncle of Japanese Emperor Akihito, Prince Mikasa, died on Thursday, leaving only four heirs to the Chrysanthemum throne, the Imperial Household Agency said.
Mikasa's death coincides with renewed attention to the future of the aging and shrinking imperial family and whether women should be allowed to inherit the throne, breaking a males-only succession tradition that conservatives say is central to an imperial tradition stretching back 2,600 years.
Mikasa was the youngest brother of the current emperor's father, Hirohito, in whose name Japan fought World War Two
The prince, a scholar of ancient Oriental history, taught at colleges, and served as honorary president of the Middle Eastern Culture Center in Japan and the Japan-Turkey Society.
Emperor Akihito, 82, hinted in August that he wanted to abdicate - a step unprecedented in modern Japan and not possible under current law. The remaining four male heirs include 10-year-old Prince Hisahito, the emperor's only grandson.
The three older heirs are Akihito's 80-year-old brother and his two middle-aged sons including Crown Prince Naruhito.
(Reporting by Kaori Kaneko; Editing by Michael Perry)
Serious News for Serious Traders! Try StreetInsider.com Premium Free!
You May Also Be Interested In
- Trump signs order withdrawing U.S. from Trans-Pacific trade deal
- Euro zone consumer confidence rises less than expected in January
- ATR boss troubled by competition impact of Bombardier bailout
Create E-mail Alert Related CategoriesReuters
Sign up for StreetInsider Free!
Receive full access to all new and archived articles, unlimited portfolio tracking, e-mail alerts, custom newswires and RSS feeds - and more!