Hundreds join Tokyo anti-nuclear rally

Hundreds of anti-nuclear demonstrators marched in Tokyo Sunday, calling for Prime Minister Yoshihiko Noda to abandon the country’s atomic energy programme following last year’s Fukushima accident.

By (AFP)

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Published: Sun 26 Aug 2012, 4:30 PM

Last updated: Fri 3 Apr 2015, 9:57 AM

Approximately 500 protesters, including mothers with their children and young men banging drums, walked through the capital’s popular Shibuya shopping district.

‘This is part of the movement that has backed up the rallies outside the prime minister’s office every Friday,’ one of the participants said.

In recent months about a thousand people have protested every Friday outside the prime minister’s office in Tokyo, in an attempt to put pressure on Noda to ditch Japan’s nuclear energy programme.

Last week the PM met face-to-face with anti-nuclear demonstrators for the first time.

Representatives of the movement asked Noda to reverse his decision to restart two reactors and urged him to abandon nuclear power altogether.

Noda declined to switch off the two reactors that were restarted this summer amid looming power shortages.

He repeated his government’s plans to adopt a new energy policy to reduce the country’s dependence on atomic power, which once accounted for one-third of its supply.

Japan turned off its stable 50 reactors in the wake of the 9.0 magnitude quake on March 2011, which set off a massive tsunami that swamped the Fukushima Daiichi plant, sending reactors into meltdown.

Radiation was spread over a large area in the worst nuclear accident in a generation.

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