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    Japanese Imperial Couple Visit Tsunami Evacuees

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    The emperor and empress of Japan visited an evacuation center one northern city to comfort tsunami evacuees. They also plan to visit Fukushima prefecture, site of the damaged nuclear power plant, on May 11th. Many Japanese are still living in evacuation centers, after the massive earthquake and tsunami hit the country in March.

    Japanese Emperor Akihito and Empress Michiko visited the tsunami devastated city of Kamaishi in North Japan Friday morning.

    The couple traveled by airplane and then by bus to visit an evacuation center in Kamaishi City.

    As they knelt by survivors, some broke down and cried.

    The area is still hit by frequent aftershocks and one slightly rattled the building as the couple was visiting.

    An evacuee at the shelter Riyoshi Matsuda was comforted by the presence of the Emperor and Empress.

    [Riyoshi Matsuda, Evacuee]:
    "It was a somewhat strong shake, so I quickly reached out and grabbed the empress' hand, and she was just so incredibly kind, she put her hand on top of mine."

    Another woman managed to find a picture of the imperial couple she had taken in 1997 inside her destroyed house. She showed the picture to the couple and thanked them for coming.

    The Emperor and Empress have long played a role comforting the public in tough times.

    The couple also visited the destroyed city of Miyako and plan to visit Fukushima prefecture on May 11th.