|Goodwill tour: Emperor Akihito and Empress Michiko wave to those gathered at the Department of Foreign Affairs in Ottawa Wednesday. They are on an 11-day visit to Canada. AP PHOTO|
The event was held at the headquarters of the Canadian Foreign Affairs and International Trade Department on the third day of the Imperial Couple’s official duties in the country.
The event also featured a musical performance by Monkey Majik, a Japanese pop rock band comprising two Canadian brothers and two Japanese members.
The 75-year-old Emperor’s visit to Canada in 1953 was the first-ever overseas trip for the then 19-year-old Crown Prince.
At that time, he crossed Canada by train on his way to Britain, where he attended the coronation of Queen Elizabeth II as a representative of his father, Emperor Hirohito, known posthumously as Emperor Showa.
Japan and Canada established diplomatic ties in 1928, with Japan opening a diplomatic office in Ottawa that year and Canada opening one in Tokyo the following year.
The Imperial Couple moved on to Toronto later in the day, where they were welcomed by Japanese children living there.