By WILLIAM SPOSATO, Wall Street Journal (Asia), April 30 2011
TOKYO — A special advisor to the Japanese government on radiation safety
resigned Friday, saying that he was dissatisfied with the handling of the
ongoing crisis at the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant.
Toshiso Kosako, a professor at the prestigious University of Tokyo, said at
a news conference that the prime minister’s office and agencies within the
government “have ignored the laws and have only dealt with the problem at
the moment.” Holding back tears, he said this approach would only prolong
Following the devastating March 11 earthquake and tsunami, the Dai-ichi
nuclear power plant has become the site of the second-worst nuclear power
plant crisis in history. Three of its six reactors still pose a potential
threat as officials and plant operator Tokyo Electric Power Co. work to
bring the situation under control.
Mr. Kosako was appointed on March 16. In announcing the appointment, chief
government spokesman Yukio Edano described him as someone who
“possesses outstanding insight and expertise in the field of radiation safety.”
Mr. Kosako was one of six special advisers to the administration of Prime
Minister Naoto Kan. According to Mr. Edano’s announcement, Mr. Kosako
was to provide “information and advice to the prime minister on the ongoing
incidents as the nuclear power stations.”
But he said that in the weeks since his appointment, it was difficult to
know who was actually in charge of dealing with the situation.
Diet member Akihisa Nagashima, a senior politician within the ruling
Democratic Party said in a statement that the administration had urged Mr.
Kosako to stay on and that his departure represented a “heavy blow” to the
government. A spokesman for the prime minister’s office had no immediate
Officials and foreign experts say that the situation at the plant has now
passed its most critical stages, with a much lower threat of a large release
of radiation that could cause widespread health problems.
Write to William Sposato at email@example.com
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