Business & Economy

Japan protests Russia’s seafood import restrictions

Tokyo, Oct 17 (EFE).- Tokyo on Tuesday protested Moscow’s decision to temporarily restrict imports of Japanese seafood over concerns of radioactive contamination.

Russia on Monday said it was restricting the imports as a “precautionary measure” amid Japan’s staggered release of treated nuclear wastewater from the damaged Fukushima plant into the Pacific Ocean.

China imposed a ban on Japanese seafood imports after the first round began in August.

Japan’s Minister of Economy, Trade and Industry Yasutoshi Nishimura said in statements to the media on Tuesday that Russia’s unacceptable “unilateral” move was “extremely regrettable,” goes against international trade, and was not based on scientific reasoning.

The country’s foreign ministry also condemned the decision on Monday, saying that “the strengthening of import control measures for Japanese aquatic products without scientific evidence is unjustified and goes against the international trend to relax and lift the import restrictions on Japanese food products,” it said.

“The decision by the Russian Federation is extremely regrettable, and the Japanese side strongly urges its withdrawal. Japan will continue to strongly call for action based on scientific evidence.”

Tokyo Electric Power Company (TEPCO), responsible for the plant, carried out the first phase of the release between Aug. 24 and Sep. 11, dumping 7,788m3 of the treated wastewater with a tritium radioactivity of approximately 1.1 trillion Bq, according to the company.

Millions of tons of contaminated water have been generated in the plant’s facilities, either by the cooling work of the damaged reactors and the fuel melted in the nuclear accident of 2011, or by rainwater leaks over the years.

This water is treated through a complex filtering system that eliminates most of the harmful radioactive elements, except tritium, before being stored in tanks to be discharged. EFE


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