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Celebrating birth of male heir, Japanese are seriously concerned about the princesses

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A male heir has been born in the Japanese royal family. On September 6, Princess Kiko, 39, wife of Prince Akishino, Emperor Akihitos second son, gave a birth to the boy by Caesarean section. The boy was born 20 days ahead of time. His weight is 2.558 kg, height 48.8 cm.

The birth of the first male heir to Japan's throne has defused an imminent succession crisis, however, it can only be a temporary respite, the AP reports. Experts believe the birth of the prince can avert the critical situation, but the whole system of inheriting the throne needs to be revised to avoid such crises in future.

“The imperial family has escaped the succession crisis, but only for the moment,” Koichi Yokota, professor of constitutional law at a Japanese university, is quoted as saying by AP. “If the imperial family continues to follow this male-only policy, it will one day go extinct,” historian Sanae Fukuto says to the agency.

Since 1965, there have been only girls born in the royal family, and no boys, the Associated Press reports. Many Japanese treat the principle of inheriting the throne only by males as a relic of past.

“It's incredible that in this modern era, the imperial family still pressures women to give birth to a son. That women can't become monarchs goes against the principle of gender equality that modern Japan is supposed to be built on,” Fukuto says to AP.

However, the Japanese Conservatives seem to have calmed down for some time. In the long run, the reform can be delayed for later time. Now, we may have about forty years," says foreign minister Taro Aso, who is called a candidate to replace outgoing Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi. “That will give us ample time for debate,” Aso supposes.

Meanwhile, a Japanese research institute has found that the birth of the male heir will positively influence the Japanese economy, as it was in 2001, when after Princess Aiko was born, the number of marriages and birth rate increased in Japan, Mainichi Daily News reports.

Earlier, no boys were born in the royal family. After the report on the birth of the royal heir, thousands people went out in Sapporo waving national flags to congratulate Emperor Akihito and Empress Michiko.  

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