Two Japanese sisters have been certified by Guinness World Records as the world's oldest living identical twins at 107 years and 300 days old.
Umeno Sumiyama and Koume Kodama were born on November 5, 1913 on Shodo Island in Japan, to a large family of 13.
The twins, who have lived through two world wars, have been living apart since they finished elementary school. Koume left the island to help her uncle and married someone outside, while Umeno stayed in Shodo Island.
The sisters recall being bullied in school because they were twins, and said it was one of the toughest experiences of their childhood, according to Guinness World Records.
Now living in separate care homes, officials said they were unable to visit them in person to present their certificates owing to Covid-19 restrictions, so they mailed them instead.
According to care home staff, Umeno was in tears as soon as she saw the certificate, while Koume, whose memory is not what it once was, couldn't fully comprehend the significance of receiving the paperwork.
The twins beat previous record holders Kin Narita and Gin Kanie, also from Japan, who were 107 years and 175 days. Kin died in January 2000 while Gin died the following year, aged 108.
When Umeno and Koume celebrated their 99th birthday, considered a special milestone in Japan marked by massive celebrations, Umeno looked at a photo of Kin and Gin and said "I think we look younger”, according to Guinness World Records.
The twins’ family said they didn't expect to break Kin and Gin's record, and were shocked when they did.
Life expectancy is the highest in the world in Japan, which has a number of supercentenarian (a person who is more than 110 years old) records.
The world’s oldest living person, Kane Tanaka from Fukuoka, was certified in March 2019 at the age of 116 years and 66 days.
The oldest man ever, Jiroemon Kimura, died at the age of 116 years and 54 days in June 2013.
The 2022 edition of Guinness World Records, which has been published every year since 1955, was released last week, and features a number of new feats. Previously announced records include the most expensive French fries, the longest wall sit, which was won by a Dubai resident, and the highest altitude fireworks, by Dubai's Global Village.