TOKYO, September 23 (RIA Novosti) – Japan should use Russia's experience and create legislation similar to the law adopted following the Chernobyl disaster to regulate radiation levels and the relocation of people in the Fukushima prefecture, Hiroyuki Arai, member of the House of Councillors in the Diet (Japan's parliament), told RIA Novosti Tuesday.
"I would like Japan to use Russia's experience in creating the "Chernobyl legislation." I admire Russians for having created a law on Chernobyl and the consequences of the disaster that sets limits for radiation levels and health risks and regulates the conditions in which people live," Arai, who is a member of Japan's New Reform Party (Shinto Kaikaku) said.
Arai noted that the Russian law states that a safe level of radiation is up to 1 millisieverts a year. "Japan prefers not to clarify this. Japan says that 20 millisieverts [a year] is ok," Arai said.
Japan also requires that all residents, who have left their homes following the Fukushima nuclear disaster, must return to their homes, while the Russian law gives people the right to move to a permanent residence in another place.
According to Arai, 70 percent of people who have left their homes, will not return, regardless of what the Japanese government tells them to do.
Arai noted that countries that have passed legislation, like the Chernobyl one, "greatly surpass Japan in terms of health protection and the protection of human rights."
On March 2011, the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant was hit by a 9.0-magnitude earthquake and a subsequent tsunami, which caused a partial meltdown of three of the plant's nuclear reactors. The radiation from the plant leaked into the atmosphere, soil and sea.
The incident is the world's worst nuclear disaster since the Chernobyl catastrophe of 1986. Full liquidation of its consequences is expected to take about 40 years.
Japan's central government is responsible for decontaminating evacuation zones in 11 of the country's municipalities, where annual radiation levels exceed 20 millisieverts.
Municipal authorities are responsible for cleanup operation in the less contaminated areas in 40 municipalities, where annual radiation dosages range between 1 and 20 millisieverts.