160,000 people are still unable to return home. Nobody has been held accountable for this man-made disaster. Please let the Prosecutors know that the whole world is watching. Demand them to conduct rigorous investigations, using all authority vested in them, and to prosecute the TEPCO executives and Japanese government officials charged in this criminal case. Don't be deterred by the prediction of Japanese main stream media that the prosecution is unlikely.
We formed the Fukushima Nuclear Disaster Plaintiffs in March 2012, to hold the people responsible for the catastrophic accident accountable by the power of law.
The Japanese government is now making every effort to make it appear that Fukushima is back to normal. Two years on, the stricken Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant continues to release radiation, and presents a risk of a devastating accident in the event of another big earthquake. There are about 160,000 evacuees, who are exhausted by temporary arrangements that seem never to end. The government has done nothing to evacuate the children to safe places. Most of them are left in dangerously contaminated areas in Fukushima, and some have started to show serious signs of their health being compromised.* Too much time passed before the decontamination started, and now its effectiveness is called into question despite huge costs. Compensations for the victims from the Tokyo Electric Power Company (TEPCO) have been slow-to-come and grossly inadequate. The natural environment we all share has been seriously contaminated and it would take many thousands of years to recover.
Not a single person has been held accountable for this catastrophe. The report of the independent investigation commission set up by the Japanese Diet published in July 2012 unequivocally states that the accident was man-made; TEPCO did not take appropriate measures against the potential risks of tsunami already identified; and the collusion of the government oversight agencies with the nuclear power industry compromised safety.
Last year, over 14,000 people in Japan filed a suit as the Fukushima Nuclear Disaster Plaintiffs against 33 individuals, which include former TEPCO executives, government officials who were in charge of nuclear safety, and the Radiation Health Risk Management Adviser appointed by Fukushima Prefecture. We pressed criminal charges on grounds of professional negligence resulting in death and injury, and environmental pollution offense. In recent months, the Fukushima and Tokyo District Public Prosecutor's Offices have been conducting investigations, and it is expected that they will reach a decision on whether to establish a case to prosecute those individuals by the end of March. Japanese media has been reporting in concert that the likelihood of the prosecution is slim.
Please let the Prosecutors know that the whole world is watching how they act. Please join us in demanding them to conduct a thorough investigation, using all the authorities vested in them, including compulsory measures. They cannot be just going through motions. The repercussion of this disaster has been felt worldwide. We need to send a strong message to them that the world demands the prosecution of the individuals charged in this case.
* 3 children have now been diagnosed with thyroid cancer, out of 38,000 examined under the Fukushima Prefecture's thyroid check program through March 2012. Additional 7 children of this group are undergoing further examinations for suspicion of cancer. [a report by the Fukushima Medical University, 2/13/2013] This group of 38,000 children represents only about 10% of children in Fukushima 18 years old or younger.
More about the Fukushima Nuclear Disaster Plaintiffs at http://www.save-children-from-radiation.org/news-1/legal-actions/
- Fukushima and Tokyo District Public Prosecutor's Offices
The accident at TEPCO's Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant triggered by the earthquake on March 11, 2011, caused the damage to an extent we have not experienced previously. After a year and 11 months, there are still 160,000 people who are not able to return home. The travails of evacuation have taken a toll on many vulnerable people, including those with disabilities, some of whom died after being forced to evacuate. Despite the scale of this man-made accident, no one in the national and municipal governments or TEPCO have been held accountable. Compared with other accidents and disasters, this is unjustifiable and incomprehensible.
Victims and evacuees in Fukushima filed mass complaints in June of last year, and victims across Japan followed in November. We, citizens of the world, are watching how your offices treat these complaints. It the government and TEPCO do not take any responsibility whatsoever for the catastrophe they have caused, Japan's foundation with a constitutional government will be questioned. And the trust and credibility of the Japanese society will be lost. We strongly urge you to use your authorities to the utmost to investigate this crime committed through the collusion of public offices and a private corporation. Social justice and the protection of life must be the supreme values of our societies. We demand rigorous and impartial investigations including compulsory investigations that would lead to the prosecution of those charged in this mass complaint.
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