Japanese Emperor Akihito and Empress Michiko visit the Hue Imperial Citadel on March 4 (Photo: VNA)

Thua Thien – Hue (VNA) – Japanese Emperor Akihito and Empress Michiko visited Hue city, the central province of Thua Thien-Hue on March 4.

At the Hue Imperial Citadel, an official from the Hue Monuments Conservation Centre introduced them to the special culture of Hue – the ancient capital of Vietnam under the Nguyen Dynasty, which was recognised by UNESCO as a World Cultural Heritage in 1993.

Many of the palaces and tombs of Nguyen Kings in Hue have been restored with assistance from the Japanese Government and experts from the Waseda and Tokyo Universities, he said.

The Emperor and Empress enjoyed Hue royal court music, which was recognised by UNESCO as a Masterpiece of the Oral and Intangible Heritage of Humanity in 2003. It was also staged in Japan in the eighth century.

The same day, the Japanese Emperor and Empress called at a memorial house dedicated to patriot Phan Boi Chau, an initiator of Dong Du movement in early 20th century that encouraged young Vietnamese to go east to study and seek ways to save the nation.

Currently, a memorial stele dedicated to Japanese doctor Asaba Sakitaro, who made great contributions to Dong Du movement, is being kept at Fukuroi city, Shizuoka prefecture as a symbol of Vietnam-Japan friendship in the 20th century.

During their stay, the royal couple met Japanese nationals in Vietnam and volunteers of the Japan International Cooperation Agency in Hue.-VNA