Abstract

T. Yamada  "Fukushima nuclear power accidents and human right remedy from the viewpoint of International Law"


Since 3/11 in 2011, the Government of Japan has been faced with recommendations to improve the human rights situation regarding victims of the Fukushima nuclear accidents from international human rights bodies which were established under the human rights treaties to which Japan is a State Party. For instance, the Committee on Social and Cultural Rights expressed  concernsabout the unfulfilled specific needs of disadvantaged and vulnerable groups, such as older persons, persons with disabilities, and women and children, as well as about the lack of transparency and disclosure of necessary information regarding the safety of nuclear power installations (2013). The Human Rights Committee on Civil and Political Rights was concerned with the situation of persons returning to (un)decontaminated areas (2014). Independent rapporteurs also visited Japan to research the human rights situation after the Fukushima nuclear accident. Especially in his report to the UN Human Rights Council, Special Rapporteur on the right of health, Anand Grover recommended Japan to take some steps to improve the situation regarding the rights of health (2012).

Unfortunately, Japan did not ratify  any optional protocol which provide for an individual communication procedure. In this situation, at first it is important to ensure that the Government of Japan respond squarely those recommendations coming up from state reporting system and achieve them in good faith. Secondly, it is crucial to explore how to make use of them in the national implementation of international human rights, such as lawsuit in Japanese courts.