• Kyodo


Former princess Mako Komuro and her husband are planning to leave Japan for New York on Sunday, a source familiar with the matter said Friday.

The newlywed couple, both 30, are scheduled to depart from Haneda Airport to start their new life in New York, where Kei Komuro works as a law clerk at a legal firm after graduating from Fordham University’s law school with a Juris Doctor degree in May.

The Komuros have already secured a place to live in the U.S. city, according to the source.

It was originally planned that Kei would travel to the United States first, due to work commitments, and the former princess, who left the imperial family upon marrying a commoner, would join him later after obtaining a passport.

But Kei’s stay in Japan was prolonged after Mako’s grandfather and Crown Princess Kiko’s father, Tatsuhiko Kawashima, a professor emeritus at Gakushuin University, died last week and the couple attended his family funeral Saturday.

The eldest daughter of Crown Prince Akishino and her boyfriend married on Oct. 26 after years of controversy over a financial dispute involving his mother that led the couple to forgo traditional ceremonies associated with a royal marriage.

The couple appeared together in front of the press later that day for the first time in about four years, with Mako saying she wanted to lead a “peaceful life” in a new environment.

With the niece of Emperor Naruhito having been diagnosed with a complex post-traumatic stress disorder following a media frenzy over the couple and the financial dispute, the two only gave opening remarks and distributed written answers to questions submitted earlier by the media at the press event.

The 1947 Imperial House Law, which limits heirs to a male who has an emperor on his father’s side, requires female royals to give up their imperial status when they marry a commoner.

Kei returned to Japan from the United States in late September for the first time in about three years. Following the marriage, the couple has been living in a Tokyo condominium.

Kei took the New York state bar examination in July, but failed it. He is expected to retake the exam, possibly in February.

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