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China Declines Japan’s Proposed Mechanism to Assess Treated Nuclear Water

According to information obtained by Kyodo News, the Japanese government proposed that China join an IAEA international mechanism for objectively analyzing and assessing monitoring results related to radioactive material in seawater samples taken offshore from the Japanese Fukushima nuclear plant. Beijing declined to follow Japan’s suggestion. This highlights China’s uncompromising opposition to Japan’s release of treated nuclear waste water into the sea, making it difficult for Japan to enter science-based dialogue.

The international mechanism will compare and analyze monitoring results conducted separately by the Japanese government and the IAEA on seawater near Fukushima. Research institutions selected by an IAEA to participate in the organization include entities from the U.S., France, Switzerland, and South Korea. To ensure objectivity, Japan is not part of the mechanism.

According to sources familiar with Japan-China relations, Japan has repeatedly urged China through diplomatic channels to join the international mechanism, enabling China to make scientific judgments. China, questioning the mechanism’s effectiveness and independence, did not accept the proposal.

Regarding the treated water, Japan proposed that China and Japan establish a consultation mechanism composed of experts and officials from both countries. China has not yet responded to this proposal.

Source: Kyodo News, September 5, 2023