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About 200 people protest restarting of Fukui nuclear reactor outside plant

Protesters stand outside the gates of KEPCO's Takahama Nuclear Power Plant in Takahama, Fukui Prefecture expressing their opposition to the planned restarting of the plant's No. 4 reactor, on May 7, 2017. (Mainichi)

TAKAHAMA, Fukui -- Approximately 200 people protested outside the gates of Kansai Electric Power Co. (KEPCO)'s Takahama Nuclear Power Plant here on May 7, to voice their opposition to the planned restarting of the plant's No. 4 reactor in mid-May.

As police officers patrolled outside the gates from the morning onward, anti-nuclear protesters from groups based in Fukui Prefecture and the Kansai region turned up from cities such as Kyoto and Kobe, with some holding placards.

From about midday onward, the protesters began to shout out slogans such as "An earthquake-prone country like Japan does not need nuclear plants," and "We are against the restarting (of the reactor)," while beating small drums. Also, a letter demanding a stop to the restarting of operations was handed over to a KEPCO employee.

Tetsuen Nakajima, former secretary-general of an anti-nuclear group based in the city of Obama in Fukui Prefecture, stated, "Please do not restart operations." In addition, participants also gathered in downtown Takahama, where they carried out a demonstration.

Further protests are also scheduled to take place between May 8 and 12 in other Fukui prefectural cities such as Obama, Tsuruga and Sabae, which will oppose the restarting of the reactor at the Takahama plant.

In addition to the No. 4 reactor, KEPCO also plans to restart the plant's No. 3 reactor, in early June.

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