April 5, 2011
FUKUSHIMA —The Japanese government on Tuesday defended its dumping of massive low-level radioactive water from the crisis-hit Fukushima nuclear plant, saying the action does not violate international laws, and pledged to fully inform the international community of Tokyo’s steps to tackle the ongoing emergency.
Foreign Minister Takeaki Matsumoto said at a press conference that Tokyo had briefed diplomatic corps in Japan on the start of radioactive water disposal hours before the plant operator Tokyo Electric Power Co (TEPCO) began releasing the liquid into the Pacific Ocean on Monday evening.
The minister stressed that the discharge poses ‘‘no significant health threats’’ to human bodies, but said Tokyo will explain to other countries about the background of measures taken at the Fukushima plant, where the nation’s worst nuclear crisis is unfolding following the March 11 massive earthquake and tsunami.
He also said the dumping does not violate the 1986 Convention on Early Notification of a Nuclear Accident, which obligates nations to provide data such as the accident’s time, location and radiation releases to affected states when harmful trans-boundary radiation release is feared.
The treaty also encourages voluntary reporting of accidents that do not meet the criteria for mandatory notification. Matsumoto said Tokyo has notified the International Atomic Energy Agency of the radiation leak in accordance with the pact.
April 5, 2011
This article was posted: Tuesday, April 5, 2011 at 4:43 am