GWADAR: Fisherman from the coastal areas at a protest demonstration on Saturday affirmed their support for the fishing communities across the world and demanded that the Japanese government reverse its decision to release contaminated water from its crippled Fukushima nuclear plant into the sea.

Hundreds of local fishermen gathered outside the press club of Balochistan’s port city here to voice their concern over the Japanese authorities’ plan to release contaminated water from the destroyed nuclear plant into the sea.

Holding placards and banners inscribed with their demands and denouncing the decisions that they said would pollute marine life, the protesting fishermen asked the Japanese ambassador in Pakistan to request his government to stop the move that they said was against human rights and would affect the fishing communities in particular.

Fishermen say decision to affect marine life, coastal communities

While addressing a press conference after the protest demonstration, senior leaders of the Fisherman Association of Gwadar Afzal Jan, Ghafoor Sajjid, Nakhuda Nabi, Illahi Baksh, Nakhuda Obaid and Abdul Khaliq Mengal explained to the press how the plan approved by the Japanese government in April 2021 would affect the livelihood of fishermen and damage the ecosystem and marine life.

They explained that marine life analysts and environmentalists, too, had raised doubts about the expertise of Tokyo Electric Power Company (Tepco) — the company in charge of the plant — to eventually clean up the Fukushima radioactive water before discharging it into the ocean. “Are Tepco and the authorities still trustworthy given their frequent stains and scandals in the past?” they questioned.

Published in Dawn, May 10th, 2021

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