Sunday, May 1, 2011

Putin slams Japan over nuclear crisis

Russian Prime Minister Vladimir Putin

Source: Press TV

Russian Prime Minister Vladimir Putin has criticized Japan's nuclear industry for poor handling of the Fukushima disaster and the building of nuclear power plants in seismic zones.

“The Japanese have a unique situation. I don't know why they build their plants in seismic zones. The whole of Japan is a seismic zone,” AFP quoted Putin as saying on Saturday during a meeting of physicists in Penza, south of the capital Moscow.

The Russian premier said he thought that Japanese authorities should have quickly supplied the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant with extra power to pump water and cool it down.

“They should have brought in new power generators from other areas of the country in time, but they did not and that's what caused problems,” Putin said in a speech published on his official site.

“And you know, these are old facilities, American reactors dating back to the 1970s,” he added.

Radiation leaks at Japan's Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant have sparked new concerns over the potential risks of nuclear power.

On March 11, an 8.9-magnitude earthquake, off the northeast coast of Japan's main island, unleashed a 23-foot (7-meter) tsunami and was followed by more than 50 aftershocks for hours.

The twin disasters have claimed the lives of more than 28.000 people.

The quake is now considered Japan's deadliest natural disaster since the 1923 Great Kanto Earthquake, which claimed the lives of more than 142,000 people.

Russia currently hosts 10 nuclear stations whose 32 reactors produced 169.4 billion kilowatts in 2010.

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