Crown Princess Masako unexpectedly joins meeting with Japanese in Tonga


Despite health concerns, Crown Princess Masako unexpectedly joined Crown Prince Naruhito for a hastily arranged meeting with Japanese residents of Tonga on Sunday.

The Crown Princess, who has been diagnosed with a stress-induced adjustment disorder, wasn’t initially scheduled to join the meeting at the Japanese Embassy in the Tongan capital.

On Saturday she and the Crown Prince attended the coronation of new Tongan King Tupou VI.

The couple told Shinichi Suzuki, a Japanese resident of Tonga who played trumpet at the coronation ceremony, that his performance was “marvelous,” with the Crown Princess adding that all in the audience noted the wonderful music.

The Crown Princess also had a chance to use her fluent English when speaking with two third-generation Japanese-Tongans.

Sinali Latu, a Tonga-born naturalized Japanese citizen and a former member of Japan’s national rugby team, also took part in the 30-minute meeting. Latu said he was happy to see the Crown Princess attending.

“I’m honored, and pleased to have come,” Latu said.

Prior to the meeting, the Crown Prince attended a luncheon at a palace in a suburb of Nuku’alofa that was hosted by Princess Angelika, daughter of King Tupou VI.

The Crown Prince and Princess returned home Monday.