His Majesty the Emperor's New Year Thoughts

1997 New Year Greeting by His Majesty the Emperor of Japan

It truly pains my heart to think of those people, held hostage at the Japanese ambassador's residence in Peru, who still today are forced to spend such difficult times, unable to celebrate the New Year with their families. I continue to hope that all the hostages will be set free safe and sound, at the very earliest moment possible.

Many events occurred during the past year, and there are still many problems to be solved for the betterment of the people's lives. I sincerely hope that a bright future may be built, as we look back over the year that we have passed, making of it sustenance for tomorrow.

May the coming year be a happy one for the people of Japan as well as for all the people of the world.