Mizuho Fukushima, head of the Social Democratic Party, took on an unusual role to underscore her party’s opposition to nuclear power: On July 27, she served as wait staff at a bar in western Tokyo’s bustling Koenji district.
An anti-nuclear power demonstration that drew thousands of protesters in Koenji in April last year was the apparent catalyst for enormous protest rallies held outside the prime minister’s office almost every Friday evening in recent months.
Fukushima, sporting an apron, handed drinks to patrons and made a fresh appeal in a neighborhood that is now regarded as home to a growing civic movement against nuclear power.
She criticized the government for nominating experts who she said are linked with the powerful nuclear power industry to posts at a new regulatory commission, which is expected to replace the Nuclear and Industrial Safety Agency as early as September.
“They are all from the ‘nuclear village,’ ” Fukushima said of the nominees. “It is nothing but a declaration of war against the public, with the government effectively announcing its promotion of nuclear power.”
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