Thursday, August 4, 2011

Japan to fire top nuclear officials

Japan's Minister of Economy, Trade and Industry Banri Kaieda

Source: Press TV

Japan's Industry Minister Banri Kaieda plans to fire three senior nuclear officials amid criticisms leveled at the Japanese government over the ongoing nuclear crisis in the East Asian country.

"Regarding the personnel changes at the ministry of economy, trade and industry, we have been discussing that for about a month," Japan's minister of economy, trade and industry said on Thursday.

"We want to refresh and revitalize the ministry," he told reporters.

"I'll have new people rebuild the ministry," he went on to say.

The three officials are Vice Minister for Economy, Trade and Industry Kazuo Matsunaga, Head of the Nuclear and Industrial Safety Agency Nobuaki Terasaka and Head of the Agency for Natural Resources and Energy Tetsuhiro Hosono.

The government of Prime Minister Naoto Kan has been severely criticized over its handling of the country's nuclear crisis which began following a destructive quake and the ensuing tsunami that hit Japan's northeastern coasts on March 11 and damaged Fukushima nuclear power plant.

The double disaster and the nuclear fallout at the Fukushima Daiichi have been described as Japan's worst crisis since World War II as they left thousands of people dead and displaced many others.

Only 19 of Japan's 54 reactors are currently working and a lot more are expected to shut down for regular checks, forcing people to save power.

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