YOKOTE, Japan — Refugees who fled Japan’s tsunami-hit nuclear reactors say they have been betrayed by the company that runs them, accusing embattled operator TEPCO of creating a “man-made disaster”.
Tens of thousands of people left their homes near the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant after it was crippled by the massive quake and tsunami that hit Japan on March 11, washing away whole towns.
Some have had to travel huge distances away from their homes and the plant, which has been spewing radioactive vapour, to find shelter.
“Many of us feel betrayed,” said Tomoko Sato, 55, who is living in a refuge centre in Yokote, Akita prefecture, more than 200 kilometres (120 miles) north of the plant.
“We were told again and again it was safe,” said Sato, who left her home in Minamisoma, a small town inside the 20-kilometre evacuation zone around the plant run by Tokyo Electric Power Company (TEPCO).
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