Japan nuclear watchdog says two reactors safe to switch back on
Published on Jul 16, 2014 7:32 PM
TOKYO (AFP) - Japan's nuclear watchdog said Wednesday that two atomic reactors were safe enough to switch back on, marking a big step towards restarting the country's nuclear plants which were shuttered after the Fukushima crisis.
But fresh protests - and accusations that the regulator is a puppet of the powerful atomic industry - have highlighted the challenges Prime Minister Shinzo Abe faces in bringing back a technology that many Japanese have forever sworn off.
Mr Abe has been trying to persuade a wary public that the world's third largest economy must return to an energy source which once supplied more than a quarter of its power.
Widespread anti-nuclear sentiment has simmered in Japan ever since an earthquake and tsunami in March 2011 caused meltdowns at the Fukushima power plant - the worst atomic disaster since Chernobyl.
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