China Bans Japanese Seafood As Radioactive Fukushima Water Is Released Into Sea

Fact checked
Protest against Fukushima water

China has banned Japanese seafood and warned there could be a ‘real-life Godzilla’ after Japan started releasing radioactive water from the Fukushima nuclear plant into the Pacific ocean.

The Chinese-owned Global Times paper warned that Japan could be opening ‘Pandora’s box’ after Tokyo Electric Power (Tepco) started pumping water containing radioactive tritium into the sea on 24th August.

In a statement Beijing’s foreign ministry said: “The ocean is the common property of all humanity, and forcibly starting the discharge of Fukushima’s nuclear wastewater into the ocean is an extremely selfish and irresponsible act that ignores international public interests.”

The move has also prompted fierce opposition from South Korea, Hong Kong and fishing communities.

The Mail Online reports: Japan has insisted the water discharge is completely safe following assessments from foreign experts and the the International Atomic Energy Agency who ruled it will cause negligible impact on the environment and human health. 

Despite this, the discharge of more than 1million tonnes of contaminated water, which is expected to take 30 to 40 years, has caused anger in neighbouring countries and concern among fishers that it will destroy their industry.

China has since banned Japanese seafood and criticised the country as being ‘extremely selfish and irresponsible’. South Korean protestors also attempted to enter the Japanese embassy in Seoul carrying banners which read ‘The sea is not Japan’s trash bin’.

The Chinese Communist Party’s flagship newspaper The Global Times then wrote that it could open ‘Pandora’s box’ and trigger fears of a ‘real-life Godzilla’, in reference to the reptile monster which first appeared in Japanese cinema in 1954. South Korean police announced that they arrested 16 protestors as roughly 50 people attempted to enter the Japanese embassy in Seoul.