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Ex-leaders’ view on thyroid cancer inappropriate: Kishida

  • February 2, 2022
  • , Jiji Press , 10:19 p.m.
  • English Press

Tokyo, Feb. 2 (Jiji Press)–Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida criticized on Wednesday a statement from five of his predecessors that many children suffered thyroid cancer due to exposure to radiation after the March 2011 nuclear disaster.

The statement “is not appropriate as it is feared to spread false information and foment groundless discrimination and prejudice,” Kishida said at a meeting of the Budget Committee of the House of Representatives, the lower chamber of parliament.

Kishida called attention to experts’ assessment that it is difficult at present to link childhood thyroid cancer to the effects of radiation from the disaster at Tokyo Electric Power Company Holdings Inc.’s <9501> Fukushima No. 1 plant in northeastern Japan, which was knocked out by a 9.0-magnitude earthquake and the subsequent tsunami.

The five former prime ministers are Junichiro Koizumi, Morihiro Hosokawa, Naoto Kan, Yukio Hatoyama and Tomiichi Murayama.

Their statement, dated Jan. 27, was addressed to Ursula von der Leyen, president of the European Commission, the executive arm of the European Union, to oppose moves within the EU that may promote nuclear power.

In the statement, they said that due to the nuclear disaster in Fukushima, many children have suffered thyroid cancer and an enormous amount of national wealth has disappeared.

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