• Kyodo

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The boyfriend of Princess Mako, the niece of Emperor Naruhito, expressed his resolve to marry her in a statement released Thursday, vowing to “correct erroneous information” regarding a monetary dispute involving his mother.

The planned marriage between the princess and Kei Komuro, both 29, has been postponed for over two years following reports of trouble between his mother and her former fiance over money, including Komuro’s educational expenses, which the man shouldered.

The princess’ boyfriend from her university days, who has been studying at Fordham University’s law school in New York since August 2018, said the 24-page document released via his lawyer is aimed at “making corrections as much as possible” with regard to the reports on the dispute.

“I believe some people may be feeling a sense of distrust due to my silence,” he said in his second public comment on the matter.

In his first public statement issued in January 2019, Komuro admitted that his family had received financial assistance from the former fiance and pledged to “gain an understanding from him” about the situation. But his explanation failed to get much public support.

The princess’ father, Crown Prince Akishino, 55, the younger brother of the emperor, said last November he approved of the couple’s marriage, but urged the Komuros to make a visible effort to resolve the dispute.

In the latest document, Komuro said he believes a settlement through talks between his mother and the former fiance would be “the best choice,” but efforts to bridge the gap over the problem through their negotiations between May 2019 and November 2020 “broke down.”

Yasuhiko Nishimura, head of the Imperial Household Agency, said at a regular news conference Thursday that the statement was “explained very well” but that the “public will make their own assessment” when it came to gaining their understanding.

The princess and Komuro met in 2012 as students at International Christian University in Tokyo. They announced in September 2017 their plan to get engaged, with their wedding originally scheduled to take place in November 2018.

But the Imperial Household Agency said in February 2018 their marriage would be put off until 2020 following reports of the dispute.

In November last year, Princess Mako expressed her resolve to go ahead with the marriage, saying it is a “necessary choice” for them.

Asked about the couple’s delayed marriage, Emperor Naruhito said at a news conference in February that he hoped for “a situation in which many people are convinced and pleased, as Crown Prince Akishino said.”

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