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Hiroshima And Fukushima

Children watch their father is screened for radiation at a shelter in Fukushima, Fukushima prefecture, Japan. The Japanese government has detected 44 confirmed and suspected cases of thyroid cancer among the 217,000 youngsters, 18 and under, checked in Fukushima. Thyroid cancer among children is generally rare, estimated at only one in a million. The link to radiation is still inconclusive, and extensive testing of Fukushima children could account for the higher numbers. But according to the World Health Organization, thyroid cancer struck thousands of people after the only nuclear-plant disaster worse than Fukushima, the 1986 Chernobyl meltdown in what is now Ukraine.

Hiroshima And Fukushima


"No more Hiroshimas!" ''No more Fukushimas!" Those slogans are chanted together at rallies by Japanese who want both an end to nuclear power in the island nation and an end to nuclear weapons around the world. But many in this city, where the world's first atomic-bomb attack killed tens of thousands, are distressed by efforts to connect their suffering to the tsunami-triggered meltdowns at the Fukushima Dai-ichi nuclear plant.

Like the bomb the United States dropped on Hiroshima Aug. 6, 1945, the March 2011 Fukushima disaster unleashed radiation that will affect the region's health for decades. Hiroshima medical experts, the world's most renowned on radiation-related sicknesses, are being called on for advice on how the meltdowns may have harmed people who lived near the power plant along the northeastern coast of Japan.


Reporting by Yuri Kageyama, the Associated Press.