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China urges Japan to stop releasing nuclear-contaminated water into ocean
  ·  2023-08-24  ·   Source: Xinhua News Agency

China opposes and condemns Japan's release of the Fukushima nuclear-contaminated water into the ocean, and has asked the Japanese government to stop this wrongdoing, a Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesperson said on August 24.

On Aug. 24, in disregard of the strong criticism and opposition from the international community, the Japanese government unilaterally started the release of the Fukushima nuclear-contaminated water into the ocean.

"China firmly opposes and strongly condemns it. We have made serious demarches to Japan and asked it to stop this wrongdoing," the spokesperson said in a statement.

Noting that the disposal of the Fukushima nuclear-contaminated water is a major issue about nuclear safety, the spokesperson said its impact goes beyond Japan's borders, and the issue is by no means a private matter for Japan.

The spokesperson said since humanity began using nuclear energy for peaceful purposes, there has been neither any precedent nor universally recognized standards for discharging nuclear-contaminated water into the ocean.

The Fukushima nuclear accident which took place 12 years ago was a major catastrophe that already caused the leakage of large amounts of radioactive substances into the ocean, the spokesperson said, adding that there could be a man-made secondary disaster to the local people and the whole world if Japan chooses to dump the water into the ocean just to serve Japan's selfish interests.

The spokesperson noted that the Japanese government failed to prove the legitimacy and legality of the ocean discharge decision, the long-term reliability of the purification facility, and the authenticity and accuracy of the nuclear-contaminated water data, saying that it failed to prove that the ocean discharge is safe and harmless to the marine environment and people's health, and that the monitoring plan is sound and effective.

Japan also failed to have thorough consultations with other stakeholders, said the spokesperson.

Noting that the ocean belongs to all humanity, the spokesperson said that to forcibly start the ocean discharge is an extremely selfish and irresponsible act in disregard of the global public interest.

"By dumping the water into the ocean, Japan is spreading the risks to the rest of the world and passing an open wound onto the future generations of humanity," the spokesperson said, adding that by doing so, Japan has turned itself into a saboteur of the ecological system and polluter of the global marine environment.

It is infringing upon people's rights to health, development and a healthy environment, which violates Japan's moral responsibilities and obligations under international law, the spokesperson said.

From the moment Japan started the discharge, it has put itself in the dock in front of the international community and is bound to face international condemnation for many years to come, said the spokesperson.

"The Chinese government always puts our people's wellbeing first, and will take all measures necessary to safeguard food safety and the health of our people," added the spokesperson.


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