Japan: "an urgent matter" for the government to consider a female headed imperial family branch

Japan’s Imperial Household Agency has told the prime minister that it is "an urgent matter" for the government to consider whether a female member of the imperial family should be allowed to create a new family branch by maintaining her royal status after marrying outside the family, it has been learned.

The agency also told Prime Minister Yoshihiko Noda last month it is necessary to design a system to ensure stable succession to the imperial throne, government sources said.

Article 12 of the Imperial House Law stipulates that female members of the Imperial family cannot form a family branch – they lose their royal status upon marriage, unless they marry the emperor or another member of the imperial family.

Read the rest of the story: Japanese leaders urged to allow branches of imperial family headed by women.