Japanese sisters certified world’s oldest twins

Umeno Sumiyama (L) and Koume Kodama with their official certificates
Umeno Sumiyama (L) and Koume Kodama with their official certificates

Two Japanese sisters have been certified by Guinness World Records as the world’s oldest living identical twins at over 107 years and 300 days.

Umeno Sumiyama and Koume Kodama have broken the record set by late Japanese twin sisters Kin Narita and Gin Kanie.

Umeno and Koume, both described as sociable people, were born on 5 November 1913 on Shodoshima island.

The announcement was made on Monday to coincide with Respect for the Aged Day – a national holiday in Japan.

Due to the current situation with Covid-19, and as a precaution, the sisters – who live in different parts of Japan – were sent their official certificates to be presented by staff at their separate care homes.

The twins were recognized as the new title holders on 1 September, Guinness said in a statement on Monday.

Previous record holders Kin and Gin had held the title of oldest identical twins at 107 years and 175 days since Kin’s death in January 2000. Gin died the following year, aged 108.

The late twins, whose names mean gold and silver in Japanese, were born on 1 August 1892 in Nagoya, and had become media celebrities in their final decade.

The family of Umeno and Koume said that both sisters had joked about reaching their age.

Umeno has four children and Koume has three.

In Japan, life expectancy is the highest in the world, and older people command considerable respect.

The oldest living person on record, according to Guinness, is 118-year-old Japanese woman Kane Tanaka.

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