Sunday 17 December 2017

Linda Sieg: Lack of decisive leadership is adding fuel to nuclear crisis

Linda Sieg in Tokyo

Concerns are growing over an apparent leadership vacuum as Japan fights to prevent catastrophe at a crippled nuclear plant and recover from the deadly earthquake and tsunami that has devastated the country's north east.

Engineers have been battling to stabilise the Fukushima nuclear complex since it was damaged by the massive March 11 quake and tsunami, but operator Tokyo Electric Power Co (TEPCO) has conceded it faces a prolonged and risky operation to avert a disastrous meltdown at the plant, 240km (150 miles) from Tokyo.

"This nuclear accident needs to be dealt with as a national security issue, not just a problem for TEPCO, and solved as soon as possible," said Toshiro Muto, a former Bank of Japan deputy governor who is now chairman of the Daiwa Institute of Research.

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