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Thursday, 21 November, 2002, 15:22 GMT
Japanese emperor's cousin dies
A cousin of Emperor Akihito of Japan has died in hospital after collapsing at the Canadian Embassy in Tokyo, where he was playing squash with the ambassador, Robert Wright.

Prince Takamado was 47-years-old and seventh in line to the Japanese throne.

As honorary president of the Japan Football Association, he made the first official royal visit to South Korea since the end of the Second World War when he attended the opening ceremony of the 2002 World Cup.

Correspondents say the prince was an outspoken supporter of more openess with regard to the royal family in Japan.

Married to Princess Hisako, a former commoner, he had three daughters and worked for the Japan Foundation, a government-funded organisation promoting international exchange.

From the newsroom of the BBC World Service

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