March 13, 2011
In a ruling-opposition summit meeting held on March 12 at the prime minister’s official residence following the Great East Japan Disaster, Japanese Communist Party Chair Shii Kazuo requested that the prime minister give top priority to rescue operations before everything and that the government must do all it can for that. Shii said that the JCP will cooperate in rescue and relief actions.
Regarding the explosion at the Fukushima No. 1 nuclear power plant, he said, “We are extremely worried about the situation. We hope that the government will take every possible measure to prevent radioactive material from leaking out.”
He also proposed that the government promptly hand out iodine tablets to residents in the damaged areas to prevent radioactivity from entering the thyroid gland.
PM Kan said that the government, in cooperation with the Fukushima prefectural administration, is working to hand out the iodine preparation to the residents.
On the explosion that took place at around 3:30 p.m. on March 12 at the Fukushima No. 1 nuclear power plant, Japanese Communist Party Chair Shii Kazuo commented, “The prime minister and the chief cabinet secretary should grasp how things really are, and promptly take measures to protect the people’s lives.”
Asked by reporters for a comment about the government’s responses to the accident, Shii said, “One problem is that the government announced the fact of the explosion to the public two and half hours after the explosion occurred and that the government is not being clear and forthright concerning the entire situation.”
Shii went on to say, “I told the premier’s aide Kato Koichi on the phone that such a response won’t help nearby residents suffering from extreme anxiety. I told him that the prime minister and the chief cabinet secretary are responsible to grasp the entire situation, reveal the facts to the people, and immediately take steps to minimize the damage, including proceeding swiftly with emergency evacuations and handouts of iodine preparation to remove radioactivity from the body.”