Japan’s Supreme Court says government is not responsible for Fukushima damage

The media reports that the effect of the decision will be closely monitored as a precedent.

A powerful tsunami, triggered by a magnitude 9.0 earthquake off the northeast coast of Japan on March 11, 2011, hit the Fukushima Daiichi power plant of Tokyo Electric Power (Tepco), causing the worst nuclear disaster since Chernobyl and forcing hundreds of thousands of people to leave. their houses.

The plaintiffs sought damages from both Tepco and the country in several class action lawsuits, and in March the Supreme Court upheld Tepco’s decision to pay 1.4 billion yen in damages to about 3,700 people.

Japan’s Chief Cabinet Secretary Hirokazu Matsuno declined to comment directly when asked about the decision at a press conference, although he said he was aware of it.

“Regardless of the decision, we will remain close to the victims of the disaster and continue to do our best to reconstruct and revive Fukushima,” he said.

About 470 thousand people were forced to evacuate in the first days after the disaster, and tens of thousands cannot return even now.

The lower courts were divided over the extent of the government’s responsibility for foreseeing the catastrophe and ordering Tepco to take steps to prevent it.

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