Protesters in Fukushima, Tokyo rally against nuke plants
Protesters march in Fukushima on Sept. 11, calling for abolition of nuclear power plants. (Kengo Hiyoshi)A human chain opposed to nuclear power plants surrounds the Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry in Tokyo on Sept. 11. (The Asahi Shimbun)
FUKUSHIMA -- About 100 people took to the streets here on Sept. 11, calling for the abolition of nuclear power plants, six months after the Great East Japan Earthquake damaged the Fukushima No. 1 nuclear power plant.
"Cattle in Fukushima cannot graze on grass in Fukushima," a dairy farmer, one of the organizers, said at the rally. "We want to say 'No!' to nuclear power plants in a message to all the people."
The meeting was followed by a march through the city.
"My twin sister is expected to give birth in December," said a 29-year-old woman from Kawamata, Fukushima Prefecture. "If children cannot play outdoors without worry, something is wrong with society."
In Tokyo, a hand-holding chain of about 1,300 people surrounded the Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry the same day, also calling for the abolition of nuclear power plants.
The protesters also marched in front of the head office of Tokyo Electric Power Co., operator of the embattled Fukushima No. 1 plant.
Police are searching for 4,086 people still missing since the March 11 earthquake and tsunami, which claimed 15,781 lives. About 1,100 bodies have not yet been identified.
More than 6,000 people are still staying at evacuation centers and other places while many others have moved to temporary housing and rented private homes.
In Fukushima Prefecture, 3,437 people are staying in hotels and other accommodations, while 227 are staying in eight evacuation centers. In Miyagi Prefecture, 2,698 people are staying in 115 evacuation centers.