Fukushima a 'preventable' disaster: Japanese commission news
06 July 2012

A parliamentary inquiry in Japan, concluded yesterday that the nuclear accident at Fukushima was preventible and had stemmed from the collusion between government and industry and the worst conformist conventions of Japanese culture.

The report, released by the Fukushima Nuclear Accident Independent Investigation Commission, further warned that the plant might have been damaged by the earthquake on 11 March 2011, even before it was hit by a tsunami - an assertion that would add to worries as the quake-prone country starts to bring its reactor bank on stream after it was shut down.

The commission had a different view from the official version put out by the government and Tokyo Electric Power Co (Tepco), the operator of the Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant, to determine what went wrong in the early days of the crisis.

Though the report found it necessary to assign widespread blame it fell short of calling for censure of specific executives or officials and holding them accountable.

A number of citizens' groups called for an investigation of Tepco executives on charges of criminal negligence - a move Kiyoshi Kurokawa, the commission's chairman, did not allow as it did not faii in the purview of the inquiry.

Kurokawa said criminal prosecution ''is a matter for others to pursue,'' at a news conference after the release of the report.

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Fukushima a 'preventable' disaster: Japanese commission