KAGOSHIMA — Kagoshima Gov. Yuichiro Ito gave his consent on Nov. 7 to restarting the Sendai Nuclear Power Plant in the Kagoshima Prefecture city of Satsumasendai despite strong protests from locals and other demonstrators who arrived from areas as far away as Fukushima Prefecture.
Police and workers from the prefectural government headquarters closely guarded the assembly building on Nov. 7. At about 9 a.m., a group opposed to restarting the plant’s reactors gathered in front of the prefectural government building, protesting that officials were ignoring public opinion.
Among the demonstrators were 12 people from Fukushima Prefecture, which hosts the Fukushima No. 1 Nuclear Power Plant, the scene of the nation’s worst-ever nuclear disaster.
“The disaster taught us that there’s no such thing as a safe nuclear power plant, and that humans and nuclear power can’t coexist,” said 58-year-old Yoshiharu Saito, an executive from an organization in the city of Fukushima. “I came here to Kagoshima to convey the feelings of Fukushima Prefecture residents who went through the disaster.”
Eiji Yanase, a 60-year-old member of an organization in Saga Prefecture, which is home to the Genkai Nuclear Power Plant, also took part in the protest.
“We are seeing one fait accompli after another. I don’t want the children and grandchildren of the future to have to pay the price,” he said.
Also protesting was 61-year-old Shigenobu Kawahara, from Isahaya, Nagasaki Prefecture. “To stop moves toward restarting the Sendai Nuclear Power Plant will lead to halting the reactivation of other nuclear power plants,” he said.