May ends Japan trip by meeting emperor and basketball game

Theresa May rounded off her Japan visit today with a private audience with the country's outgoing emperor - after insisting she has no plans to quit as leader.

The Prime Minister's trade trip has been overshadowed by questions over her leadership after she vowed to stay on and fight another election.

Her comment sparked a backlash among some of her MPs but yesterday she insisted she is in the job for 'the long term'.

And she got a vote of support from her International Trade Secretary Liam Fox, who was also in Japan and said she had his support 'for as long as she wished to continue as leader'.

This morning she met with met with Emperor Akihito at the Imperial Palace in Tokyo where they talked for 20 minutes.

The emperor's leadership has also hit the headlines as he is preparing to become Japan's first ruler in 200 years to abdicate the throne.

Theresa May met with the Japanese Emperor Akihito at the Imperial Palace in Tokyo today. The emperor has announced his intention to abdicate, while the British Prime Minister has vowed to go on being leader and fight another election despite critics in her own party

Theresa May met with the Japanese Emperor Akihito at the Imperial Palace in Tokyo today. The emperor has announced his intention to abdicate, while the British Prime Minister has vowed to go on being leader and fight another election despite critics in her own party

Mrs May and the Japanese Emperor spoke for around 20 minutes during the visit, on the final day of her three-day trip to Japan

Mrs May and the Japanese Emperor spoke for around 20 minutes during the visit, on the final day of her three-day trip to Japan

The Japanese government earlier this year passed legislation paving the way for him to step down, and it is understood he plans to quit next year following ill health. 

The Prime Minister later headed off to watch a game of wheelchair basketball between Great Britain and Australia being held as part of the world challenge cup before meeting business leaders at an embassy reception.

Downing Street sources said the three-day trip had been 'highly successful' after Mrs May and Mr Abe agreed to boost defence links.

The Japanese premier's decision to say he had faith in the future of the

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