Title: Secret meetings held on Fukushima nuclear crisis’s impact on human health
Date: Oct 3, 2012
The prefectural government here held secret meetings among a panel of experts on the nuclear crisis’s impact on human health to work out scenarios for official deliberation sessions based on the view that there is no causal relationship between the disaster and the outbreak of cancer, sources close to the case said.
A prefectural government official [...] admitted in an interview with the Mainichi Shimbun that the secret meetings were inappropriate and said they would not take place again.
Before the eighth official session in the city of Fukushima on Sept. 11 this year, a health survey had confirmed for the first time that a child living in the prefecture was suffering from thyroid cancer.
During the preparatory meeting for that session, the members shared the view that there is no causal relationship between the nuclear disaster and the outbreak of the cancer. They then worked out a scenario under which one of the members would ask a question about whether there was a causal relationship between the crisis and the cancer and the university would answer the question.
At the official session, one panel member actually asked whether there was a causal relationship. In response, a Fukushima Medical University professor denied the suspicion, pointing out that it took at least four years after the Chernobyl nuclear accident in 1986 before the number of thyroid cancer patients increased.
Shunichi Yamashita, Fukushima Medical University Vice President: “If [these meetings] stir a sense of distrust among members of the public, I don’t mind discontinuing such gatherings.”
Published: October 4th, 2012 at 3:16 am ET
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