Japan MP drinks Fukushima water to prove it is safe

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A Japanese official has drunk water collected from the quake-hit Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant, after reporters challenged him to prove it was safe.

Yasuhiro Sonoda appeared nervous and his hands shook as he downed a glass during a televised news conference.

The water he drank was taken from puddles under two reactor buildings. It is decontaminated before being used for tasks such as watering plants.

Journalists have repeatedly queried the safety of the procedure.

Sonoda, a Lower House member from the ruling Democratic Party of Japan, said he drank the water after freelance journalists repeatedly prodded him during previous news conferences to “prove” the environment around the stricken plant is safe, as claimed by the government and Tokyo Electric Power Co.

Tepco has been removing radioactive cesium from contaminated water from units 5 and 6 by reducing the density of the substance to less than 50 becquerels per liter. Decontaminated water is then used within the compound for various purposes — but not for drinking.

Source: www.bbc.co.uk, via Twitter search for Fukushima
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