China urges to address Fukushima fallout

Updated: 2013-11-06 08:04


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UNITED NATIONS - China on Tuesday urged Japan to minimize the subsequent impact of the Fukushima nuclear disaster and called for assistance to Japan in dealing with contaminated water leakage.

The Fukushima nuclear disaster two years ago has prompted the international community to reflect on the development of nuclear energy, said Wang Min, China's deputy permanent representative to the UN, at a meeting of the UN General Assembly on a report of International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA).

The accident "sounded the alarm bell for nuclear safety," he said, noting that China considers as "a source of concern" recent reports on water leakage from the Fukushima nuclear plant that went into meltdown after being hit by a tsunami in March 2011.

"China follows closely the countermeasures to be adopted by Japan. We urge the Japanese side to spare no effort in minimizing the subsequent impact of the accident and provide timely, comprehensive and accurate information to the international community," he said.

China called on the IAEA to follow and monitor more closely the subsequent impact of the Fukushima nuclear accident and provide the Japanese government with necessary guidance and assistance to properly address the water leakage, he said.

"We also hope that the agency will steadily push forward the comprehensive review of the Fukushima nuclear accident and the response measures," he added.

IAEA director general Yukiya Amano said in presenting his report that the recent leak of contaminated water was "a clear reminder" of the continuing impact of the Fukushima accident.

"The IAEA has recommended that Japan establish an effective plan and mechanisms for the long-term management of contaminated water. The announcement by the Japanese government of a basic policy for addressing this issue was an important step forward," Amano said.

An IAEA team will visit Japan later this year, he added.

The Chinese envoy also called for efforts from the UN nuclear watchdog to promote full implementation of plans on nuclear safety and security so as to raise global nuclear security level and restore international confidence in nuclear energy development.

Since China is a major energy consumer, the Chinese government firmly supports the development of nuclear power. At the same time, China has always upheld the principle of "safety first" and attached great importance to nuclear safety and emergency response, Wang said.

"China has made constant improvements to relevant laws and regulations, stepped up infrastructure development, and established a rigid supervisory and regulatory system for nuclear safety," he said.

On China's international nuclear safety cooperation, Wang said that the Nuclear Safety Demonstration Center in Beijing is being built with steady progress, which will serve as a training and exchange platform for Asia and the Pacific.

China has made donations to the IAEA Nuclear Security Fund, he said, adding that China stands ready to provide help, through the platform of the IAEA, to countries that need to convert highly enriched uranium to low enriched uranium in their research reactors.

China hopes that the UN nuclear watchdog would continue to provide assistance for developing countries to help them develop and utilize nuclear energy and continue its constructive role in addressing regional nuclear issues, and contribute to the settlement of relevant issues through dialogue, Wang said.