12 Jun 2011

Frustration at delays post-quake

5:30 am on 12 June 2011

Three months after the magnitude 9.0 earthquake and resulting tsunami that hit Japan on 11 March, there is simmering public frustration over the government's slow response to the catastrophe.

Prime Minister Naoto Kan, who has been under heavy pressure to step down, has visited part of the disaster zone, where some 8,000 people remain unaccounted for and more than 90,000 others are still living in crowded shelters.

The toll of dead and missing from the quake and tsunami has topped 23,000.

Nuclear power plant still causing concern

Thousands of people are expected to attend an anti-nuclear rally in Tokyo as radiation continues to leak from the Fukushima nuclear power plant, which was badly damaged in the huge tsunami triggered by the quake.

A 20 km no-go zone has been enforced around the plant, which emergency crews hope to bring into stable "cold shutdown" between October and January.

Greenpeace this week called for the evacuation of children and pregnant women from Fukushima town, about 60 kms from the plant, because of what it said was high radiation.

Meanwhile, an American physicist, Micho Kaku, has told CNN TV the company that runs the plant has been deliberately understating radiation figures in the hope that the accident "would go away".