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HOME  > Past issues  > 2014 April 16 - 22  > People in Turkey also do not want nuclear power
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2014 April 16 - 22 [ECONOMY]

People in Turkey also do not want nuclear power

April 16, 2014
Japanese Communist Party representative Inoue Satoshi criticized the deal on Japan’s exports of nuclear power plants with Turkey as ignoring both the Turkish people’s opinion and the risk from major earthquakes there.

At an Upper House Foreign Affairs and Defense Committee meeting on April 15, Inoue reported that a recent opinion poll in Turkey shows that 63% of respondents oppose the construction of a nuclear power plant in their country and that the mayor of Sinop City where the plant will be built is also against hosting nuclear reactors.

Foreign Minister Kishida Fumio said, “But, I hear from the Turkish government and parliamentarians that that is only a limited objection.”

Inoue in response accused the Japanese government of ignoring the local citizens’ voices and listening to information offered only by local nuclear energy promoters in order to go ahead with Japan’s nuclear power exports.

Similar to Japan, Turkey is located on the boundary of four tectonic plates and has experienced major earthquakes several times.

Pointing to this fact, Inoue said, “It is absolutely preposterous to have a nuclear facility built in a quake-prone nation.” The minister, however, responded by saying that the chance of earthquakes in the Sinop area is very small.

Inoue cited the 1995 earthquake killing more than 6,400 people and the 2011 Great East Japan Disaster taking more than 18,000 lives as examples, recollecting that both occurred where the government had predicted a low probability of severe quakes.

The JCP Dietmember again demanded that Japan reflect on the lessons it learned from these two disasters and refrain from exporting nuclear infrastructure and related technologies to other countries.

Funabashi Harutoshi, Hosei University professor, who was present at this meeting as an unsworn witness referred to Japan’s new nuclear control standards about which Prime Minister Abe Shinzo boasts as being “the highest level of standards in the world”. The professor stated, “The new standards are clearly inferior to European ones.”

He said, “Anyone who says ‘the highest level of standards in the world’ is maybe believing in an illusion, knowing little about atomic power, or committing a lie,” adding that he does not want government officials to make the claim of having “the highest level of standards in the world”.
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