Prayer, protest at Japan anti-nuclear rally | Pakistan Today

Prayer, protest at Japan anti-nuclear rally

Tens of thousands of people rallied near Japan’s crippled Fukushima plant Sunday demanding an end to nuclear power as the nation marked the first anniversary of a disastrous quake and tsunami. Memorial ceremonies and anti-nuclear demonstrations were held across the northeast region where an estimated 160,000 people were forced to evacuate after the monster waves triggered a meltdown at the Fukushima Daiichi plant. Around 16,000 people including citizens, refugees, activists, children and foreigners, gathered at a baseball stadium in Koriyama some 60 kilometres (37 miles) away from the plant.
Participants called for an end to nuclear energy in Japan and compensation for victims from operator Tokyo Electric Power, a year after the March 11 quake-tsunami sparked the world’s worst atomic disaster in a generation. “Our town has turned out to be another Chernobyl,” Masami Yoshizawa, who ran a cattle farm in Namie, 10 kilometres (six miles) from the plant, shouted through a loudspeaker. “We are in despair now, but I will get back my hometown even if it takes me the rest of my life,” said Yoshizawa as he stood atop a wagon displaying pictures of his cows lying dead in their shed. “I won’t be beaten, no matter what. I will keep on fighting,” he said. A group of monks in brown and white robes chanted Buddhist sutras as activists carried banners reading: “We will never forget the March 11 Great Earthquake. We will never forgive the nuclear accident.”