EMPEROR Naruhito has ascended the Chrysanthemum Throne, proclaiming himself Japan’s 126th emperor before a cheering audience.

At an enthronement ceremony at the Imperial Palace in Tokyo, Naruhito pledged to serve his constitutional duty as a symbol of the state and to stay close to the people.

Japanese prime minister Shinzo Abe congratulated him and led three “banzai” cheers. The cheers traditionally means “ten thousand years” of long life.

The enthronement ceremony is the high point of several succession rituals that began in May when Naruhito inherited the throne after the abdication of Akihito, his father. Naruhito is the 126th emperor in the world’s oldest hereditary monarchy, which historians say goes back 1500 years. The ceremony lasted only about 30 minutes.

MEANWHILE, US troops leaving Syria and heading to neighbouring Iraq do not have permission to stay in the country, Iraq’s military has said.

The statement appears to contradict US defence secretary Mark Esper, who has said that under the current plan, all US troops leaving Syria will go to western Iraq and the military will continue to conduct operations against the terrorist group Daesh to prevent its resurgence in the region.

READ MORE: US defence secretary calls for American troops to remain in Syria

Speaking to reporters travelling with him to the Middle East, Esper did not rule out the idea that US forces would conduct counter-terrorism missions from Iraq into Syria, but said the details will be worked out over time.

ELSEWHERE, at least three people, including two babies, have been injured in Norway’s capital city as they were struck by an ambulance stolen by an armed man who was injured when police opened fire to stop him. Officers said those struck by the ambulance included a woman with a pushchair and an elderly couple. The woman and her twin babies were taken to hospital.

“We are in control of the ambulance that was stolen,” Oslo police tweeted. “Shots were fired to stop him.”

"Two babies were injured after the hijacked ambulance hit a family. They are twins, seven months old, they are being treated," an Oslo University hospital spokesman said.

FINALLY, Italian football chiefs are considering employing advanced listening devices used in anti-terrorism operations to identify racist fans.

After at least five cases of racist chanting in eight rounds of the Serie A season, football federation president Gabriele Gravina has detailed “a passive radar device that uses directional microphones to determine the source of the noise. It can immediately determine who is making a racist chant – or it can illustrate the trajectory of fireworks.”