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HOME  > Past issues  > 2013 June 19 - 25  > LDP policy head saying ‘Nobody died in Fukushima nuclear crisis’ ignores 1,415 related deaths
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LDP policy head saying ‘Nobody died in Fukushima nuclear crisis’ ignores 1,415 related deaths

June 19, 2013
Liberal Democratic Party’s policy head Takaichi Sanae on June 17 during her talk in Kobe City said that no one has died from the Fukushima nuclear accident, offering a glimpse into her party’s rationale and justification for the restart of atomic power generation because no deaths resulted from the accident.

However, a total of 1,415 people, as of June 18, have died in shelters and their deaths were counted as disaster related (Fukushima prefectural government data), and 29 people committed suicide in connection with the nuclear accident at TEPCO’s Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant (Cabinet Office data).

Parliamentary investigators of the accident reported to the Diet that 60 people had not been immediately evacuated and in essence had been left to die in seven hospitals and nursing-care homes located in a 20-km zone from the Fukushima Daiichi plant. An evacuation order following a large release of radioactive materials hampered rescuers from saving the 60 from the wreck and ruin after the earthquake and tsunami which caused the subsequent nuclear accident.

The accident forced local residents out of their homes. High levels of radiation deprived them of their livelihoods and jobs. The roads to their communities are still barricaded.

The remark Takaichi made came out when she was emphasizing the need to resume Japan’s atomic power generation. She was saying, “Nuclear power generation costs a lot of money if the decommissioning of reactors is included, but the costs for their operation are relatively inexpensive.”

Her statement disregards the reality of repeated disaster-related deaths, displaying the very nature of the LDP enthusiastic about resuming idled reactors and exporting Japan’s know-how on atomic power generation.

Japanese Communist Party Secretariat Head Ichida Tadayoshi on the same day criticized Takaichi. He said, “The LDP-Komei government has shown itself to be a death merchant making light of the anguish of 150,000 people driven from their homes due to the Fukushima Daiichi accident and trying to sell Japanese nuclear power plants abroad by proclaiming Japan has the world’s highest safety standards.”

* * *

LDP Policy Research Council Chair Takaichi on June 19 announced that she will retract her controversial remark.

Past related articles:
> Fukushima’s Namie town demands apology from LDP lawmaker for her abusive remark concerning nuclear victims [June 23, 2013]
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