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Japan will go nuclear-free, PM insists

Published on Sep 21, 2012 4:54 PM
 
Japanese Prime Minister and re-elected ruling Democratic Party of Japan (DPJ) leader Yoshihiko Noda smiles while answering a question during his press conference in Tokyo on Sept 21, 2012. Japan will go nuclear-free, Prime Minister Noda insisted on Friday, rebutting criticism that his government was floundering and unable to come up with a coherent position on the issue. -- PHOTO: AFP

TOKYO (AFP) - Japan will go nuclear-free, the prime minister insisted on Friday, rebutting criticism that his government was floundering and unable to come up with a coherent position on the issue.

Mr Yoshihiko Noda's administration last week declared it was aiming to eliminate atomic power from the country's energy mix by 2040.

But an announcement the next day by his trade minister that two partially-built reactors could be finished and put to work cast doubt on the government's determination.

And newspaper reports that the cabinet had not endorsed the plan led to criticism Mr Noda was trying to be all things to all people, hoping to appease a nuclear-skeptic public while keeping energy-hungry businesses onside.

 
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