Foreign ministry demands Japan’s explanation on Fukushima water release
Aug. 23, 2019
Global Korean Post
By Kim Young Deok and Kim Minji
The Ministry of Foreign Affairs on Aug. 19 summoned an official from the Japanese Embassy in Seoul to demand an explanation on Japan’s plan to release contaminated water from the 2011 Fukushima nuclear meltdown into the Pacific Ocean.
On Greenpeace Korea’s claim that Tokyo plans to discharge such water, Kwon Sei-joong, the ministry’s deputy director-general for climate change, energy and environmental affairs, delivered a diplomatic letter on Seoul’s position to Tomofumi Nishinaga, a minister for economic affairs from the Japanese Embassy.
The letter expressed the Korean government’s concern over the contaminated water’s effects on the safety and health of both Koreans and Japanese as well as on countries located along the ocean. It also included a request for a specific explanation from Tokyo on the planned discharge.
Nishinaga said he would deliver Korea’s position to his government and that Japan would “transparently and faithfully” explain all information on the discharge to Korea and the world.
On Aug. 7, Greenpeace Korea posted an article by senior nuclear specialist Shaun Burnie warning that the release of wastewater from the Fukushima plant would increase exposure to radiation in neighboring countries, especially Korea. He claimed that the Japanese government and Tokyo Electric Power plan to release over a million tons of high-level radioactive water from the Fukushima plant into the Pacific.