Human Rights, Humanitarian Assistance,Refugees
Response to the Joint Communication from two UN Special Rapporteurs from the Government of Japan concerning the Tokyo Electric Power Company Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Station accident
November 6, 2018
- On September 5, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MOFA) received a joint communication from two UN Special Rapporteurs [note] concerning the Tokyo Electric Power Company (TEPCO) Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Station (NPS) accident (English (PDF) / Japanese (provisional translation) (PDF)) via the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR). On November 5, the Government of Japan (GoJ) submitted its response (English (PDF) / Japanese (provisional translation) (PDF)) to the joint communication to the UN Special Rapporteurs via the OHCHR. The response explains GoJ's efforts for decontamination of radioactive material discharged by the TEPCO Fukushima Daiichi NPS accident and reconstruction from the damage caused by the accident.
- Thus far, the GoJ has sincerely dealt with this issue by submitting its response (English (PDF) / Japanese (provisional translation) (PDF)) to the OHCHR in response to UN Special Rapporteurs. Nonetheless, on October 25, while the GoJ was in the process of formulating its response to the joint communication, the Special Rapporteur on the implications for human rights of the environmentally sound management and disposal of hazardous substances and wastes released a press release that contains erroneous contents based on a one-sided claim. The GoJ is seriously concerned about such claim, as it could unnecessarily inflame public anxiety, cause confusion, and further trouble people suffering from harmful rumors in disaster-hit areas.
- In response to the press release, on 26 October (25 in NY time), at the Third Committee of the General Assembly of the United Nations, the Permanent Mission of Japan to the United Nations exercised the right of reply vis-à-vis the Special Rapporteur and demonstrated the GoJ's position. Furthermore, the GoJ decided to upload its response to the joint communication by the Special Rapporteurs, which mentions GoJ's statements and counterarguments vis-à-vis specific issues pointed out in the joint communication, with a viewpoint of preventing information that contains inaccurate contents based on misunderstandings from spreading any further.
- The GoJ continues to explain its position and efforts such as the response to this joint communication to the international community, including the United Nations.
- [note] 2 UN Special Rapporteurs:
- Mr. Baskut Tuncak, Special Rapporteur on the implications for human rights of the environmentally sound management and disposal of hazardous substances and wastes
- Ms. Cecilia Jimenez-Damary, Special Rapporteur on the human rights of internally displaced persons.
- [note] Who are the UN Special Rapporteurs?
- The Special Rapporteurs are independent experts appointed by the Human Rights Council and serve in their personal capacities in order to make research and report on specific human rights situations in a country or on specific themes relating to human rights. The view of the Special Rapporteurs is not an official opinion of the United Nations nor its inter-governmental body, the Human Rights Council.