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The life and reign of Emperor Akihito – in pictures

After 30 years on the throne, Emperor Akihito is to abdicate on 30 April and his son, Crown Prince Naruhito, will officially accede on 1 May. The 85-year-old emperor is the first in two centuries to stand down. His reign began on 7 January 1989, following the death of his father, Emperor Hirohito

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