Students shave heads to protest against Japan's Fukushima plan

South Korean college students having their heads shaved outside the Japanese embassy in Seoul yesterday in protest against Japan's decision to release treated water from its crippled Fukushima nuclear plant into the sea. Japan last week said it will
South Korean college students having their heads shaved outside the Japanese embassy in Seoul yesterday in protest against Japan's decision to release treated water from its crippled Fukushima nuclear plant into the sea. Japan last week said it will release over a million tonnes of the treated water in stages starting in about two years.PHOTO: AGENCE FRANCE-PRESSE

SEOUL • More than 30 South Korean college students shaved their heads in front of the Japanese embassy in Seoul yesterday in protest against Japan's decision to release water from its crippled Fukushima nuclear plant into the sea.

Police periodically dispersed crowds, but did not stop the event from taking place, though there is an anti-pandemic ban on gatherings larger than 10 people.

The protesters who were shaved were draped in protective sheets emblazoned with messages condemning the Japanese plan and calling for it to be ditched. One read: "The Japanese government should immediately cancel the plan to release the contaminated water."

Japan's government last week said it will release more than a million tonnes of treated water from the Fukushima site in stages starting in about two years.

Seoul has strongly rebuked the decision, with the Foreign Ministry summoning the Japanese ambassador and President Moon Jae-in ordering officials to explore petitioning an international court.

US climate envoy John Kerry on Sunday said he believed Japan had made the decision in a transparent manner and would continue to follow due procedures.

REUTERS

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on April 21, 2021, with the headline 'Students shave heads to protest against Japan's Fukushima plan'. Subscribe