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information about Fukushima published in English in Japanese media info publiée en anglais dans la presse japonaise

Strong words from Sengoku

DPJ's Sengoku describes halt of all nuclear plants 'mass suicide'



NAGOYA (Kyodo) -- Yoshito Sengoku, acting chief policymaker of the ruling Democratic Party of Japan, on Monday described the halting of all nuclear power plants in Japan as its "mass suicide."

"If we don't think about what the economy and livelihood would be like in the event of (the nuclear plants') halt, that would be, in a sense, something like the mass suicide of Japan," Sengoku said in a speech. He is one of the core members of the ruling party deliberating over whether to approve reactivating nuclear plants.

Sengoku's comment is believed to reflect his stance as a promoter of the resumption of nuclear plants. But his comparing the impact on the economy and on peoples' livelihoods of halting all nuclear plants to suicide caused controversy in political circles.

"I don't know the context," Chief Cabinet Secretary Osamu Fujimura told a news conference when asked to comment on Sengoku's analogy. "But judging from the words alone, it is not very good."

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