US ambassador in Tokyo praised Fukushima fish, saying China’s nuclear plants pollute more than Japan’s

Rahm Emanuel, US ambassador to Japan (Reuters) (KIM KYUNG-HOON /)

He United States ambassador to Japan he gave himself a fish feast from Fukushima this Thursday, claiming that the water discharged by the crippled nuclear power plant was safer than that “discharged” by Chinese atomic facilities.

China last week banned all seafood imports from its neighbor after Japan began dumping Fukushima sewage into the Pacific Ocean, accusing Tokyo of treating the ocean like a “sewer.”

“Throughout the decade, Japan has done exactly the right things in the right way. International scientific rigor, full transparency and inviting the international community to monitor their progress in cleaning up the water”, said Ambassador Rahm Emanuel when visiting the area devastated by the 2011 tsunami and nuclear catastrophe.

The water in this area is safer than (the water that) China’s four power plants dump untreated into the ocean“, he claimed.

Lunch with the mayor of Soma, Hidekiyo Tachiya, at the Takohachi restaurant in Fukushima (Reuters)
Lunch with the mayor of Soma, Hidekiyo Tachiya, at the Takohachi restaurant in Fukushima (Reuters) (KIM KYUNG-HOON /)
Tasting of fruit grown in the prefecture (Reuters)
Tasting of fruit grown in the prefecture (Reuters) (KIM KYUNG-HOON /)

The water being discharged from Fukushima has been filtered of all radioactive elements except tritium, according to the plant’s operator, TEPCO.

Tritium levels are within safe limits and below those released by nuclear power plants in normal operation, including in China, TEPCO says.

Emmanuel, 63 years old, ate a plate full of raw slices of flounder, tuna, and sea bass at a local restaurant before shopping at a supermarket for more locally grown fish and peaches.

The public show of support for Japan came a day after the prime minister’s office Fumio Kishida broadcast a video of him consuming fish and other products from Fukushima.

Emanuel accused China of acts of “economic coercion”, “harassment” and “misinformation” against Japan.

“This is all politics, and it has nothing to do with information,” the US ambassador said.

Nothing China has done has to do with informing, educating, or improving people’s judgment.“, he claimed.

The ambassador supported the consumption of local products (Reuters)
The ambassador supported the consumption of local products (Reuters) (KIM KYUNG-HOON /)

The Australian embassy also offered its support on Wednesday, posting a video on social media showing its diplomats buying products from the Fukushima region at a Tokyo store.

“Australia has a strong connection to Fukushima,” read one of them in Japanese. “We will continue to support Fukushima,” added another.

The discharge of more than 500 Olympic-sized swimming pools of treated water began on August 24.

Public hostility in China has increased since then, with the throwing of bricks and eggs against schools and Japanese consulates. Japanese companies have also been inundated with harassing calls from Chinese numbers.

Beijing rejected the “alleged concerns of the Japanese side,” instead blaming Japan for “unilaterally and forcibly” initiating the sewage dumping.

(With information from AFP)

Keep reading:

On a trip to China, the British Foreign Secretary raised concerns about human rights violations

Indonesia arrested 88 Chinese for being part of internet romance and phone scam ring