It looks like Princess Mako's long-delayed wedding isn't imminent. The Japanese princess, who became engaged to Kei Komuro in 2017, had first planned to marry him a year later but that date was pushed off, with the couple saying the wedding would happen in 2020. In early November, however, the princess said in a statement that the wedding would happen at an unspecified later date. The BBC now cites Japan's Crown Prince Akishino as saying in remarks issued Monday that he "approves" of his daughter's marriage plans, though his comments weren't delivered enthusiastically and were paired with sticking points. Kyodo quotes him as saying "I mean, I approve of them getting married. The constitution says marriage shall be based only on the mutual consent of both sexes. If that is what they really want, then I think that is something I need to respect as a parent."
But the crown prince then spoke of the Japanese people, saying that "in order for many people to be convinced and celebrate [their union], I have said it is important for the issue to be dealt with," an apparent reference to a money dispute Komuro's mother has been embroiled in. She reportedly used money given to her by her then-fiance so that Komuro could attend university; she says the money was a gift, while her former fiance insists it was a loan. The crown prince continued, "From my point of view, I think they are not in a situation where many people are convinced and pleased [about their marriage]." The New York Times reports he had previously said an official ceremony (called a "Nosai no Gi," per Kyodo) would not occur unless the public approved of the marriage. (Read more Princess Mako stories.)