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Facility on edge of 20-km nuclear exclusion zone to become Olympic training center via Asahi Shimbun

May 13, 2014

The government intends to turn a national soccer training center located just 20 kilometers from the crippled Fukushima No. 1 nuclear power plant into a practice facility for the 2020 Tokyo Olympic and Paralympic Games, sports minister Hakubun Shimomura said May 12.

The center, named “J-Village,” spans the municipalities of Hirono and Naraha in Fukushima Prefecture and is currently used by Tokyo Electric Power Co. as a base to deal with the nuclear accident triggered by the March 2011 earthquake and tsunami disaster.

“We must improve the circumstances (in the area) so that soccer players not only from Japan but also from abroad can hold training camps there in advance (of the Games),” the sports minister said in a news conference after inspecting the damaged nuclear power plant. “The government must positively back up measures for decommissioning reactors and coping with radioactive water without leaving the job entirely up to TEPCO.”

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One Response

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  1. norma field says

    Putting aside for the moment the more serious problem of Fukushima residents encouraged or pressured to live on in or return to places entailing radiation exposure risk: are no athletes, no coaches going to protest this cynical move by Japan? Or will this not be reported widely enough until it’s a fait accompli and too late?

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