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天皇陛下80歳 公務の負担軽減を検討したい

The Yomiuri Shimbun December 23, 2013
As Emperor turns 80, it’s time to consider trimming his duties
天皇陛下80歳 公務の負担軽減を検討したい(12月23日付・読売社説)

The Emperor has marked his 80th birthday.
 天皇陛下が80歳の誕生日を迎えられた。

On this occasion, we express our heartfelt congratulations to the Emperor for reaching this milestone while being hale and hearty.
お元気で過ごされていることを心から喜びたい。

In February last year, the Emperor underwent coronary artery bypass surgery. His recovery has gone as scheduled. The Emperor currently performs official duties at the same pace as he did before the operation.
 陛下は昨年2月に心臓の冠動脈のバイパス手術を受け、順調に回復された。現在は手術前と同じペースで公務に取り組まれている。

The day before his 80th birthday on Monday, the Emperor said at a news conference in the Imperial Palace, “While coming to terms with certain constraints due to my advancing age, I would like to continue playing my role as much as possible.”
 誕生日前の記者会見で、陛下は「年齢による制約を受け入れつつ、できる限り役割を果たしていきたい」と述べられている。

Referring to his official duties, he said, “I wish to maintain my current pace, at least for a while.” This suggests he is rather negative about any move to reduce his official duties on health grounds.
 公務については「しばらくはこのままでいきたい」と語り、健康上の理由による公務の軽減には否定的な考えを示された。

This is presumably because the Emperor, with his best wishes for the happiness of the people, still feels a strong sense of responsibility to continue moving forward with the populace.
 国民の幸せを祈り、国民と共に歩み続けることに強い使命感をお持ちだからだろう。

Accompanied by the Empress, the Emperor visited such places this year as areas devastated by the Great East Japan Earthquake of March 11, 2011, and Minamata, the city in Kumamoto Prefecture that has become known for the mercury-poisoning disease with the same name. The Imperial couple also followed a tight schedule on their recent official visit to India.
 今年も、陛下は皇后さまと共に東日本大震災の被災地や熊本県水俣市などを訪ねられた。先日、インドを公式訪問された際も、過密な日程をこなされた。

Many people want the Emperor to be able to continue to engage in his official duties in good health. For this very reason, however, we believe the burden placed on the Emperor should not be excessive.
 陛下にお元気で公務を続けられてほしいと願う国民も多いことだろう。そうであればこそ、ご負担が過重になってはなるまい。

The Imperial Household Agency should examine how to reduce the load shouldered by the Emperor, perhaps by handing some of his duties to Imperial family members including Crown Prince Naruhito and his younger brother, Prince Akishino.
 宮内庁は、公務時間のより一層の短縮や、皇太子さまや秋篠宮さまへの一部公務の引き継ぎも、検討していくべきだろう。

Adhering to Constitution

The Emperor’s stance of always giving consideration to the people is also represented by his views on his funeral and mausoleum.
 常に国民を思いやる陛下の姿勢は、自らの葬儀や御陵に関する考え方にも表れている。

In November, the Imperial Household Agency announced that the Emperor plans to be cremated, rather than be buried as has been tradition for emperors since the Edo period, and scale down his mausoleum compared to those of the Emperor’s predecessors.
宮内庁は11月、江戸時代から続いてきた土葬を火葬に変更し、御陵は規模を縮小する方針を明らかにした。

These plans fit snugly with the wishes of the Emperor and Empress not to impose an onerous burden on the people in regard to the construction of their mausoleums and their funerals. These decisions can be said to reflect the desire of the Emperor, who has been committed to ensuring the Imperial family can meet the changes of the times while keeping the essence of royal tradition intact.
 御陵の整備や葬儀にあたって、国民に負担をかけてはならないという天皇、皇后両陛下のお考えを踏まえたものだ。伝統を守りつつも、時代に即した皇室のあり方を模索し続ける陛下らしいご決断と言えよう。

During the news conference, a question was asked about the relationship between the Imperial family and politics.
 今回の記者会見では、皇室と政治の関係について質問が出た。

Some media outlets were outraged that Princess Hisako of Takamado attended the general session of the International Olympic Committee in September that chose Tokyo as host city of the 2020 Olympics and Paralympic Games.
 高円宮妃久子さまが、2020年東京五輪・パラリンピックの開催を決めた9月の国際オリンピック委員会(IOC)総会に出席されたことに関し、一部メディアなどが問題視していた。

In reply to the question, the Emperor said when he faces a thorny question, “I have made it a rule to seek the opinions of the Imperial Household Agency director general and the agency’s councillors.”
 陛下は、判断の難しい場合、「宮内庁長官や参与の意見を聴くことにしています」と答えられた。

This statement was intended to emphasize afresh his position of adhering closely to Article 4 of the Constitution, which stipulates the Emperor “shall not have powers related to government.”
天皇は「国政に関する権能を有しない」とする憲法4条を順守し、自らを律するというお立場を改めて強調されたのだろう。

At the IOC session, Princess Hisako only expressed Japan’s gratitude for such things as support extended from many nations after the Great East Japan Earthquake. She refrained from making any direct reference to Tokyo’s Games bid. Some media said her speech amounted to “using the Imperial family for political purposes.” It was nothing of the sort.
 久子さまは、IOC総会で大震災への各国の支援などに謝辞を述べただけで、東京招致への直接的な言及は避けられた。「皇室の政治利用」に当たるはずがない。

This issue must not be allowed to bother the Emperor any further.
 この問題でこれ以上、陛下の心を煩わせてはならない。

(From The Yomiuri Shimbun, Dec. 23, 2013)
(2013年12月23日01時25分 読売新聞)
[PR]

by kiyoshimat | 2013-12-27 06:43 | 英字新聞

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