via Japan Today / November 5, 2013 /
Former Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi has defended his about-face on nuclear power. Speaking in Yokohama on Monday, Koizumi shrugged off criticism that he had changed his stance on the issue of Japan’s reliance on nuclear power.
The furor started on Oct 20 when Koizumi—who has retired from politics—gave a speech in Chiba Prefecture, in which he said that Japan should rid itself of nuclear power, although he had pushed ahead with nuclear power while in office.
His speech ruffled feathers within the ruling Liberal-Democratic Party (LDP). Both Chief Cabinet Secretary Yoshihide Suga and Economic Revitalization Minister Akira Amari dismissed Koizumi’s comments as being just those of a private citizen.
In his Yokohama speech, Koizumi said: “I now realize that my former stance was irresponsible and not in Japan’s best interests,” Fuji TV reported. Koizumi said he had been overly optimistic for believing that not only can Japan continue using nuclear power, but it simply must. But now, he said, “there is nothing wrong with a person changing his views.”
Koizumi said “considering all that has happened, and with plans to deal with no plans to deal the spent nuclear fuel rods at the Fukushima plant, we must work toward a future without nuclear power. Renewable energy is the way to go for Japan.”
SOURCE: JAPAN TODAY