BEIJING, China: A Japanese plan to release treated radioactive wastewater from the Fukushima nuclear plant into the sea has been condemned by China, which demanded that Tokyo first receive approval from neighboring countries.
In recent years, China has repeatedly criticized Tokyo for its close relations with the US.
During a daily briefing last week, Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesperson Mao Ning described Japan's behavior as "extremely irresponsible."
"I would like to stress that Japan's release of treated nuclear-contaminated water from the Fukushima plant concerns the global marine environment and public health, which is not a private matter for the Japanese side," Mao said.
"Until full consultation and agreement is reached with neighboring countries and other stakeholders and relevant international institutions, the Japanese side shall not initiate the discharge of nuclear-contaminated water into the sea without authorization," she added.
On 11th Match, 2012, a magnitude 9.0 earthquake and massive tsunami hit the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant, destroying its power and cooling systems and causing the meltdowns of three reactors.
South Korea, several Pacific Island nations and Japanese fishing communities have also objected to the planned release.
The radioactive elements in the water can be reduced to safe levels, said Japanese officials and the plant's operator, Tokyo Electric Power Company Holdings, in response.
Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries Minister Tetsuro Nomura also told Kyodo News, "We will convey the safety of the fish caught in the Japanese sea with scientific evidence."