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Most of the UN nearly forgets Fukushima residents ongoing situation at up to 20 mSv/y Japan review (radiation version)

Screenshot from 2017-11-16 11:28:39
Japan Review – 28th Session of Universal Periodic Review
14 Nov 2017 –  Universal Periodic Review – Japan National Reports
Another year comes around and the world gets to see the improvements in Human Rights legislation and training that is currently being developed in Japan.
Certain issues such as the Comfort Women of Korea and the abolition of the death penalty are being discussed. Other issues such as womens rights, disability rights and children’s rights were discussed. Many forms of discrimination were in the frame except one.
Reports from Japan concerning discrimination of Fukushima nuclear evacuees, Government policies that are trying to force the evacuees back to contaminated areas and little recognition of any costly health effects that are expected to happen over the coming decades and of course, placing even more stresses on evacuees.
So, to the nub of the matter. Out of 108 speakers, only a handful even mentioned the plight of Japans internally displaced nuclear refugees. The countries UN representatives that did speak up were Germany, Mexico, Portugal and Austria with Costa Rica hoping that the Atomic bomb survivors would have their rights to health care continued and Guatamala hoped that Japan would sign up to the Nuclear Proliferation Treaty.
While the statements varied as to the issues with Fukushimas residents the 2 main points are;
That Japan should continue the health checks that the government are currently deciding to stop or shrink (For the Atomic bomb survivors as well).
The evacuees should have the right of choice and be able to be part of the decision making process involving their communities and groups.
Mr Gunnar Schneider (@02.21:19 in the video)  goes much farther and calls for a return to the safety limit of radiation to 1mSv/y which would allow more people living in higher radiation areas the option to move and receive a decent compensation to evacuate the contaminated areas. He stressed that pregnant women and children need to be considered better in radiation related health decisions.
The UN representatives who should compassion to the victims of the Fukushima disaster and Atomic bomb survivors were;
Costa Rica Ms. Diana Alejandra Alfaro
Germany Mr Gunnar Schneider
Austria Mr Micheal Pfeifer
Mexico Mr Diego Ruiz Gayol
Portugal- Ms Sonia Maria Melo Castro
It should be noted that many countries called on Japan to create an independent Human Rights Council (That would also protect Fukushima residents rights as well as other stakeholder groups discussed at the meeting). but so far, No Human Rights Council in Japan.
In response the Japanese  mission made thorough replies to the council members questions except for the issue of Fukushima related questions and the suppressive Japanese Secrets Act of 2013. However they did make a reply of sorts;
Residents have yearly tests, mental health programs and education of radiation awareness in schools etc show everything is fine in Fukushima.
And in response to the concerns about the Secrets Act, The mission pointed out that no one has been charged and the Act is not suppressing the media. In the background of this hovers the recent interview with Edward Snowden who talked about spying in Japan using the Five Eyes surveillance network. So their claims about there being no “chilling effect” on the media and wider society seemed to ring a little hollow as did their response to questions on the Human Rights of the Fukushima and Miyagi residents.
What the Germans know;
Posted by Shaun McGee
Posted to
Posted on 16 November 2017

November 16, 2017 - Posted by | Uncategorized

1 Comment »

  1. […] Japan, Nuclear, Radiation GENEVA (Kyodo) — A U.N. body on Thursday called on Japan to take steps to better protect press freedoms as concerns about the country’s laws aimed at curtailing leaks of state secrets could hinder the work of journalists. In another of the 218 non-legally binding recommendations on Japan’s human rights record released by the U.N. Human Rights Council’s working group, Tokyo was urged to apologize and pay compensation to “comfort women” forced to work in Japan’s World War II military brothels. The recommendations reflected the views of some 105 countries. Of the issues raised, the U.N. council will adopt those that have been accepted by the country in question at a plenary session around March 2018. In relation to freedom of the press in Japan, the recommendation called on the country to amend Article 4 of the broadcasting law that gives the government authority to suspend broadcasting licenses of TV stations not considered “politically fair.” Japan had already attracted criticism, in particular from David Kaye, U.N. special rapporteur on the right to freedom of opinion and expression, over its law called the Act on the Protection of Specially Designated Secrets, which came into force in 2014. Under the law, civil servants or others who leak designated secrets could face up to 10 years in prison, and those who instigate leaks, including journalists, could be subject to prison terms of up to five years. In his report, Kaye noted that the law may be arbitrarily enforced as subcategories under which information may be designated as secret are “overly broad.” On the issue of “comfort women,” raised at the request of South Korea and China, the recommendation urged Japan to promote fair and accurate historical education, including the women’s stories, and to apologize and compensate victims. The recommendation also said Japan should abolish or suspend the death penalty, reflecting calls from European Union countries, and continue to provide support to those affected by the Fukushima nuclear crisis caused by the massive 2011 earthquake and tsunami. In particular, a directive to address health issues faced by pregnant mothers and children was noted. The U.N. Rights Council is mandated to “undertake a universal periodic review” of whether countries are meeting their human rights obligations and commitments. The examination is conducted on all 193 members of the United Nations in periodic cycles of a few years. The latest review was the third for Japan. exclusive report from yesterday on the UN meeting;… […]

    Pingback by UN body calls on Japan to improve protection of press freedoms – Fukushima 311 Watchdogs | November 18, 2017 | Reply

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