Fukushima prefecture, home to the wrecked Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant, has moved to try to encourage people amid continuing fears that it is dangerous. The Torch Relay for Tokyo Olympic is programmed to begin on March 26 at J-Village, a football training facility in Fukushima used as an operation base for workers who battled the 2011 nuclear crisis.

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“This won’t be affectation any problem for holding the Torch Relay,” Fukushima region said in an announcement.

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Members of Japan’s FIFA Women’s World Cup-winning squad from 2011 are due to start the Relay. Earlier this month, it was exposed that Futaba, one of the towns in Japan worst exaggerated by the Fukushima nuclear disaster, has been added to the route of the Torch Relay. More than 260 people are due to carry the Torch throughout its three-day stay in Fukushima. 

In March 2011, the whole population was expatriate as a result of the disaster, and in the last nine years, only four percent of the town has been open to guests as it is located within the 20-kilometers elimination radius around the damaged plant and remains mostly dilapidated.

Of more than 24,000 monitoring spots along the Torch Relay route in Fukushima, one in Iitate village, 150 miles northeast of Tokyo, had the highest reading, at 0.77 microsieverts per hour, the region’s latest examination directed last month showed.

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A four-hour stay there would bring radiation exposure to 3.08 microsieverts, or 0.003 millisieverts, well below the Government’s target of keeping the public’s annual exposure arising from the nuclear accident below 1 millisievert, news agency Reuters reported. By comparison, an air traveler is exposed to 0.1 to 0.2 millisieverts of radiation during a round trip between Tokyo and New York City, Reuters claimed. 

The radiation level in Iitate is about 20 times higher than that of downtown Tokyo, which registered at 0.037 microsieverts per hour, according to the web page of Japan’s nuclear watchdog, the Nuclear Regulation Authority. A 9-magnitude earthquake and a huge tsunami hit eastern Japan on March 11, 2011, causing the poorest nuclear disaster since Chernobyl in 1986. Tokyo Olympic today holds a rehearsal of the Olympic 2020 Games Flame Handover Ceremony scheduled to take place at the Panathenaic Stadium in Athens on March 19.

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