Star-viking comments

Posted in: Boss punches employee who came to work after being told to stay home for coronavirus risk See in context

If he had a valid reason, he should had communicated it to his employer because he knew the consequences of such an action

Sadly, from personal experience, that is not the way things work here. It would be seen as “trying to bend the rules”, the rules not considering that people have legitimate reasons for crossing prefectural borders, like wanting to return to their family, or care for a loved one.

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Posted in: Boss punches employee who came to work after being told to stay home for coronavirus risk See in context

I don’t suppose anyone has considered why the 20-something worker went to Sendai?

Go back to his home? Many worksites have temporary dorms for workers to sleep in during the working week

Related to that: go back to his family, see his wife and child?

Or: go back to his parents/grandparents and help them out?

Or: go back to see his doctor and/or get a repeat prescription?

It doesn’t just have to be “took off to have a good time”.

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Posted in: Film about Fukushima heroes warns against complacency See in context

I see the myth of Kan standing up to TEPCO is still alive.

> Tepco Executive Vice President Sakae Muto, 60, ordered his subordinates at the head office to craft an evacuation plan, while Fukushima No. 1 chief Masao Yoshida started to secure enough buses. Procedures to send employees to Tepco’s Fukushima No. 2 nuclear plant were also being decided.

Shimizu, Tepco’s 66-year-old president, phoned Kaieda, who had been placed in charge of dealing with the unfolding disaster, and Chief Cabinet Secretary Yukio Edano, 46, repeatedly to seek approval for the “evacuation” of workers.

But Shimizu did not communicate clearly that Tepco would maintain a minimum core of employees to monitor the situation and continue to oversee water injection into the three reactors that had suffered core meltdowns.

https://www.japantimes.co.jp/news/2014/09/23/national/tepco-plea-evacuate-enraged-kan/#.XmXD0S-RWfA

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Posted in: Radiation 'hot spots' near Olympic torch relay in Fukushima: Greenpeace See in context

Good post Zichi.

I have my suspicions that Greenpeace are doing what they did in their initial "survey" of Fukushima City just after the accident: pushing readings at drains and trees, which funnel a lot of rainwater, and so get a lot of radionuclides coming down to the drain, roots in the case of trees.

They published the research from their Fukushima trip - headlines about "massive readings" in Fukushima City, much higher than the government were reporting. I went though the Excel file, summed the readings and took the average. Looked at the radiation reading for Fukushima City (we had those in the Tohoku newspapers at that time) - exactly the same as the Greenpeace average for Fukushima City. But Greenpeace were not interested in the average, just fear-inducing headlines that drove families apart and made people feel like they were unclean outcasts.

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Posted in: Nuclear watchdog approves restart of Miyagi reactor hit by 2011 tsunami See in context

marcelito,

Great news!

@Star viking - What are you taking about? The article says that Tohoku Electric expects to pay 340 billion yen on the countermeasures.

What Im talking about is that TE expects to pay 340 billion , and it pays 35 billion per year in additional fuel replacement cost as the article states ( vis below )....so thats roughly 10 years of the extra fuel costs saved just to recover the countermeasures spending as it is today , that what Im talking about...

Tohoku Electric applied for a safety screening for the No. 2 reactor in December 2013, and its restart would save the utility 35 billion yen annually in fuel costs.

If you check my latest post above, you'll see that Tohoku Electric can be expected to get ¥100 billion per year from Onagawa 2's electricity - probably 70 billion with costs removed (according to Zichi's calcs). So, making 70 billion yen, and saving 35 billion yen in fuel costs is 105 billion yen per year - they could, if they wanted to, pay for the countermeasures in a little over 3 years.

@Don Palmer The underlying paper is from The IZA Institute of Labor Economics in Bonn Germany funded by the Deutsche Post Foundation."

Well....on the first page of the paper you quote it has a disclaimer that states -* Any opinions in this paper are those of the authors and not IZA and IZA takes no institutional policy positions****....so the paper is not IZA official opinion paper but merely as it says "preliminary work circulated to encourage discussion " by the authors ....also containing another nice disclaimer "citation of such paper should account for its provisional character*** " which of course you conveniently don,t mention.

Tellingly, , the author researchers "*acknowledge support from Ministry of Health ,Labour and Welfare of Japan ***"** in providing figures for the research and also " *acknowledge financial support from Japan Society for the Promotion of Science,** ( a quasi government agency aka amakudari hotbed that used to be under auspices of Ministry of Education,Culture,, Sports , Science and Technology till 2003 and*

*Murata Science Foundation**, ( run by Murata Electronics, a major J-Inc player company ).*

marcelito, this is conspiracy-theory level stuff. The paper has a proper disclaimer, and we will have to wait to see how the final peer-reviewed paper is.

Of course there is support from the Ministry of Health, Labour and Welfare: where do you think the health stats come from.

And as for your animus towards the Japan Society for the Promotion of Science, do a Google Scholar search for it, with the words "Grant-in-aid" added: around 129,000 results. All, nasty stuff like:

Physarum solver: A biologically inspired method of road-network navigation

Mutations affecting components of the SWI/SNF complex cause Coffin-Siris syndrome

The use of induced pluripotent stem cells in drug development

The fact is, academic research is supported by a range of organisations, using data from other organisations, with the intent to increase knowledge.

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Posted in: Nuclear watchdog approves restart of Miyagi reactor hit by 2011 tsunami See in context

Zichi,

Star-viking

"marcelito, the costs of the extra LNG that Japan has had to buy to cover the shuttered nuclear reactors runs to between 10 and 15 trillion yen per year, 30 to 45 times the total Tohoku Electric will spend."

Compared with the eventual costs of dealing with the nuclear disaster site will be more than ¥100 trillion not including the costs of the nuclear waste storage for tens of thousands of years.

Which has nothing to do with Onagawa.

Or the costs to decommission 24 reactors , ¥60 billion each and again does not include the cost of nuclear waste storage.

Nuclear plant operators do have decommissioning funds that should, at least, offset some of that cost. There is also the increasing use of SAFSTOR to consider: closing the reactor concerned, defuelling it, and then keeping it under observation as the radioactivity of contaminate parts reduces over the 60 years of the programme.

In future, the available reactors can only generate about 15% of total power. About half prior to the 3/11 disasters. Renewable energy could be upped to supply 30% and coal burning replaced by LNG. But the power companies all signed long term contracts for Australia coal. 

Disregarding the fact that we want to end all fossil fuel use to avoid disastrous climate change, there is no guarantee that prices will not rise for LNG.

The No2 reactor became operational in 1995 so in 2011 was 16 years and now technically, 23 years. 825 MW capacity with about 60% for 60% of the time. That means the reactor generates 495MW for 14 months out of the two year reactor cycle. Then shuts for about six months for refuelling.

¥20/kWh. 495000 kWh x ¥20¥-costs =¥6 = ¥14. profits for the cycle = ¥7 million pre tax.

Where you are getting your stats? From the IAEA*, Onagawa 2 has supplied 81.16 TWh over its lifetime, with an availability of 48.6 % - however this includes the shutdown years - at pre-shutdown the availability was 73.9% - 588 MW. Per year that is 5153 GWh, or 5,153,017,440 kWh.

At ¥20/kWh, that's ¥103,060,348,800 - 100 billion yen per year, neglecting costs.

Working with your stats:

495 MW for 14 months is 495,000 kW x 10220 hours - 5,058,900,000 kWh

Multiplying that by ¥20/kWh gives 101,178,000,000 yen - 101 billion yen per year

So, our basic stats match.

3 years and 4 months of Onagawa 2 operating would pay off the costs of the updates - and also reduce fossil fuel costs enormously.

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Posted in: Nuclear watchdog approves restart of Miyagi reactor hit by 2011 tsunami See in context

marcellito,

I call BS on that ..20,000 additional deaths in Japan since 2011 due to Japan,s use of extra imported LNG / fossil fuels... who funded the researchers " for this paper? 

Very conspiracy-theoresque response there.

There have been a few papers on the issue of avoidable deaths from knee-jerk government reactions to the Fukushima accident:

"Be Cautious with the Precautionary Principle: Evidence from Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Accident", Matthew Neidell, Columbia University; University of Chicago; Shinsuke Uchida, Shinshu University; University of Maryland; Marcella Veronesi, University of Verona, Institute of Labor Economics Discussion Paper No. 12687

Summary: Rise in electricity prices after the NPP shutdowns lead to increased mortality during cold weather - they suggest 1,280 extras deaths over the 4 years 2011-2014. Note, this is a preliminary discussion paper.

"Implications of energy and CO2 emission changes in Japan and Germany after the Fukushima accident", Pushker A. Kharecha, Makiko Sato, Columbia University Earth Institute, Energy Policy Vol. 132

Summary: Post-Fukushima CO2 emission rises in Japan and Germany were limited despite major cuts in nuclear power. This was due to record-high renewable power levels and lower/steady total energy use. However large amounts of emissions and deaths were avoidable if coal and gas were reduced instead of nuclear. These avoidable impacts will make it harder to meet near-term national mitigation targets. Major energy users should reduce fossil fuels instead of or before nuclear. 

Bet it was some research tank / university expert with a grant that can be traced to N power interests as usual.

Nope.

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Posted in: Nuclear watchdog approves restart of Miyagi reactor hit by 2011 tsunami See in context

marcellito,

But then you are comparing LNG imports for the whole country , not just Tohoku Electric which as the article says spends 35 billion per year...so thats 10 years operation for them. If we were to compare apples with apples we would need the cost of restarts for all the idled plants vs the total cost of Japans imports.....then again as zichi rightly points out, that doesnt even begin to describe the picture of the total clean up fo Daiichi mess, future decomissioning and storage etc....as we all know, the taxpayer will be hit for those.... profits to the power companies and future expenses to the taxpayer...what a sweet deal for the N village.

What are you taking about? The article says that Tohoku Electric expects to pay 340 billion yen on the countermeasures.

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Posted in: Japan tells embassies risk of contaminated Fukushima water 'small' See in context

Flute,

I see no reference of 1μSv. But perhaps, I missed it. Which line ?

Apologies, I mixed up my millis and micros, so the yearly dose from remaining outside 24 hours a day, 365 days a year would have been about 26 milliSieverts. 8 hours a day would be about 9 mSv (close to dose from radon in Cornwall).

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Posted in: Poor hand hygiene may be biggest transmitter of superbug E.coli See in context

Nippori Nick,

Believe it or not, Japan did not invent the Washlet - they did buy the patent off the US inventor though.

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Posted in: Nuclear watchdog approves restart of Miyagi reactor hit by 2011 tsunami See in context

marcelito, the costs of the extra LNG that Japan has had to buy to cover the shuttered nuclear reactors runs to between 10 and 15 trillion yen per year, 30 to 45 times the total Tohoku Electric will spend.

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Posted in: Poor hand hygiene may be biggest transmitter of superbug E.coli See in context

I don't know about the rest of Japan, but in Tohoku many toilet facilities, especially JR ones, lack soap. A major sanitation fail.

Add "setsuden" to the mix, hand dryers blasting cold air, washets squirting freezing water up people's behinds - and you can see that hygene is not really taken seriously in Japan.

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Posted in: Japan tells embassies risk of contaminated Fukushima water 'small' See in context

Flute

Is that so ?

They talk about 1mSv (the yearly increase according to the Professor) and 3μSv (the Geiger counter reading). There is 0.1μSv/h natural one in Japan according to the author (I preferred the wkipedia for this one : 0.27μSv). Then there is the mathematics one. 

I see no reference of 1μSv. But perhaps, I missed it. Which line ?

It's possible I made an error (for me, posting in the morning ranks with doing mental maths on the spot as being prone to that). I'll check after the weekend and respond.

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Posted in: Japan tells embassies risk of contaminated Fukushima water 'small' See in context

Zichi,

A comprehensive and informative post, as usual. However, I have to tell you: you don’t have to worry about radiation doses from MRIs - they use magnetic fields, not ionizing radiation.

Ref: https://hps.org/publicinformation/ate/q10731.html

Flute,

Since I do not found where that came from, I choose to ignore it

It comes from the link in the quote at the top of my post.

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Posted in: Japan tells embassies risk of contaminated Fukushima water 'small' See in context

Alfie,

Well, they tried bringing in malleable propagandists like Prof Geraldine Thomas but her spin was quickly exposed and her notorious BBC piece filmed in Fukushima was actually deleted from the BBC website.

https://nuclear-news.net/2016/03/14/nuclear-propagandist-prog-geraldine-thomas-comfortable-but-incorrect-spin-on-fukushima/

From what I can recall of the video, at most it shows the ill-advisedness of doing mental maths on the spot.

From your link, based on Dr Chris Busby’s piece on Russia Today, let’s look at his maths - not done on the spot, and using a calculator:

“Now anyone with a calculator can easily multiply 3 microSieverts (3 x 10-6 Sv) by 24 hours and 365 days. The answer comes out to be 26 mSv (0.026Sv), not “about 1mSv” as the “leading expert on the health effects of radiation” reported.”

But the problem is, Dr Busby makes this calculation because Professor Thomas says:

“At one point, Rupert pulled out his Geiger counter and read the dose: 3 microSieverts per hour. “How much radiation would it give in a year to people who came back here,” he asked. Thomas replied: “About an extra milliSievert a year, which is not much considering you get 2mSv a year from natural background”.”

So, when Prof Thomas is talking about an extra microSievert on the natural background, Dr Busby takes the total and multiplies it by 24 x 365.

Prof Thomas may have made a mistake in her mental maths, but Dr Busby has made a mistake with something he had much more time to work on.

And to finish off, here’s some maths on Prof Thomas’ point:

1 microSievert x 24 x 365 = 8760 microSieverts = 8.76 milliSieverts extra

Certainly not as striking as 26 milliSieverts extra

Of course, people will not be standing outside for 24 hours every day of the year: in fact, I would hazard a guess that 2 hours in total would be a reasonable number (given that farming is suspended).

That would give 730 microSieverts extra = 0.73 milliSieverts - less than Prof Thomas’ quoted extra dose.

If we go for 3 hours outside, it matches well - just under 1.1 milliSieverts extra dose.

So, if tl/dr: Dr Busby’s maths is much worse than Prof Thomas’ math - and that’s if Prof Thomas’ is bad at all.

Prof Thomas may have made a mistake in her mental maths, but Dr Busby has made a mistake with something he had much more time to work on.

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Posted in: Nobel laureate Yoshino craves more research discoveries See in context

daito_hak,

I am sorry but I don’t think that Yoshino deserves the Nobel. 

I come from the physical sciences side of things, and there would once have been a time that I would have agreed with that statement, though maybe more whimsically (caused by Physical Science vs. Engineering rivalry)

However, seeing how basic research inspires other researchers to devote their time to using that research to benefit society, I certainly can't agree with that viewpoint at all now, and consider Engineering work like Prof. Yoshino's as fully deserving of a Nobel in Chemistry. After all, engineering is applied Science*.

And most universities with which I am familiar with in Japan have their chemistry departments in their engineering faculties.

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Posted in: Nobel laureate Yoshino craves more research discoveries See in context

kurisupisu,

"The biggest contribution to environmental protection is spreading the use of solar and wind power technologies that have an unstable electricity output," he said.

So, why doesn’t Japan have a more aggressive stance on promoting these technologies and not nuclear power?

Because the energy-storage required to replace large sections of the power-generating sector would be astronomical. Most batteries are used to smooth the output of wind and solar power, saving large amount of that power for when the sun doesn't shine nor the wind blow is another ballpark.

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Posted in: Trial of TEPCO executives over Fukushima disaster heads to conclusion See in context

A few years before the incident, officials at Fukushima were warned of a tsunami the size of the one that hit, but they ignored the advice because it was too expensive.

No, they did not ignore the warning: they were investigating it, which was a hell of a lot more than anyone else was doing: hence 20,000 tsunami deaths in Tohoku.

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Posted in: TEPCO to scrap 4 more reactors in Fukushima See in context

zichi is 100% correct on the corium issues.

Another 100% certainty is that Japan is losing 4 reactors which, with modification, could prevent us breaching the 1.5 degree warming threshold the IPCC has informed us about.

Brian, “cheap nuclear” was a claim relating to fusion power, not fission. Nuclear still does quite well on cost, except when competing against cheap frakked gas. As for safety - we did have an unexpected mega quake and tsunami.

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Posted in: High court nixes call to halt nuclear reactors in southwestern Japan See in context

papigiulio, are you seriously suggesting that TV shows should be the most reliable source of scientific evidence?

Just let these so called experts watch the tv show 'Chernobyl' or in fact send them over there to see if turning them on in a quake prone country is such a good idea.

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Posted in: M6.7 quake strikes off northeast Japan; at least 26 injured See in context

Had a warning 10 secs before it hit, enough time to get outside.

Heavy rain due today which could cause landslides. 

Part of the Shonai area of Yamagata has struggled with land subsidence these past few years. Hope everyone stays safe.

Just like the Tohoku earthquake 8 years ago, people still haven't learnt their lesson; they ignore warnings and take huge risks of getting swept away.

A big part of the problem were the mixed warnings given to the Great Tokoku Tsunami. The Met. Agency did not have a proper tsunami reporting system for such massive events, and confused people with reports of minimal tsunamis, then larger, then uh, we don't know... gonna be big.

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Posted in: Teachers are not anti-crime professionals. In addition to neighborhood monitoring and cooperation, there should be concrete anti-crime measures such as professional security guards in uniforms. See in context

Long term measures:

Introduce measures to get Hikkikomoris out of their rooms and into some kind of life.

Get Japanese people to take more notice of their surroundings. Maybe someone could have jumped in to aid the kids in that case.

Get Japanese Society to stop ignoring bad behaviour by just ignoring things - whether it's guys walking down the street with knives, or kids getting battered at home.

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Posted in: Kono to ask foreign media to switch order of Japanese names See in context

And what next? I can see the headlines now:

Japanese Anger at Western Faux-pas

The Japanese Government has expressed its anger at the disrespect shown to the Japanese Prime Minister.

Prime Minister Abe was greeted as Prime Minister "Shinzo" on arrival at the G8 summit yesterday.

His aides expressed great displeasure at this insensitive mistake.

Summit organisers, who had been expected to apologise deeply, instead replied flippantly, increasing the ire of the Japanese party:

"We were told to call him "Abe Shinzo" in English, and had expected the Japanese party to be familiar with English language conventions - we are not going to change our language to suit one country.

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Posted in: Northern Ireland police release video in hunt for journalist's killer See in context

Goodlucktoyou

I'm not talking from an armchair - Norn Iron born and bred.

Toasted Heretic

Partition happened because the people in the North, generally, did not want to be part of an all-Ireland republic - and the people in the South either did not recognise it, or thought "they'll wake up one day and realize they love it".

Northern Ireland is occupied, by the people of Northern Ireland: Protestant, Catholic, and Dissenter.

The only way to an all-Ireland state is by fully accepting that. It may be a step too far for many.

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Posted in: Northern Ireland police release video in hunt for journalist's killer See in context

Goodlucktoyou,

Northern Ireland and its people are no one’s to give to anyone. The Good Friday Agreement, massively endorsed North and South enshrines that. We are not tokens in anyones game.

Toasted Heretic

The “occupied six counties”? You do realise that such language is hardly even used by Sinn Fein these days. The people who do use it are some Irish Americans, and the people who murdered Lyra McKee

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Posted in: Increasing the proportion of nuclear energy is the most realistic way to step up efforts against global warming. Ensuring a stable supply of electricity is a challenge for society as a whole. See in context

Prior to the man made Fukushima nuclear disaster, nuclear energy generated 27% of total power and renewable energy less than 3%. Today, that is reversed with nuclear energy generating less than 3% and renewables 20%.

Inaccurate: the current renewables stats include hydro generation, so pre-accident stats should be around 10%, and current (2017) around 16.7%.

See "Status of Renewable Energies in Japan" from the Institute for Sustainable Energy Polices.

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Posted in: Fukushima contaminants found as far north as Alaska's Bering Strait See in context

Kazumichi,

Don't buy food from Fukushima.

If water is bad up there, seafood the should be worse.

Thanks so much for your support, as if the people of Fukushima haven't been through enough in the past 8 years.

-6 ( +3 / -9 )

Posted in: Don't rip Britain apart, May appeals to fellow EU leaders on Brexit See in context

Ally,

I'm sorry to disagree with you but the UK is Britain and N Ireland. The British are the English, Scottish and the Welsh. The native people of N Ireland are not british. They are Irish. 

Look, the accepted demonym for people from the UK is British. People from Northern Ireland are UK Nationals. Now it would have been nice to come up with a demonym that obviously encompasses the whole of the UK, but what would that be?

People from Northern Ireland aren't second-class citizens, to be ejected from their country at will.*

No one said they were. What I said was: 

NI needs to separate and either form a united ireland with the irish republic or become its own country.

That's hardly calling them second class citizens. Please don't put words in my mouth.

From my point of view that statement is saying that you don't want us in the UK, and we should leave. That's a choice for the people of Northern Ireland to make, as citizens of the UK.

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Posted in: Don't rip Britain apart, May appeals to fellow EU leaders on Brexit See in context

Aly,

Maybe its time for Northern Ireland to leave the UK. Geographically, culturally and historically it is Irish not British.

What is "British"?, it is the identity of the UK.

Even our passports say the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, yet Northern Irish are considered British.

That's because it is the right of anyone born in the UK to be a UK National - AKA British

For a while it didn't matter, because we were all in the EU, but now that Britain is leaving, NI needs to separate and either form a united ireland with the irish republic or become its own country.

People from Northern Ireland aren't second-class citizens, to be ejected from their country at will.

Firefox,

Britain was quite happy to rip many other countries apart, e.g, when 80% of Ireland wanted independence in 1921, Britain decided it had to respect the wishes of the 20% (descendants of British colonial planters) in north-east Ireland , and ripped the country apart, causing decides of strife. 

There was no referendum on Irish Independance, so you can't say "80% of Ireland wanted it". There was a guerrilla war that had demands they wanted met, people in the northeast of Ireland who did not want those demands met, and a nation sapped from the ardors of the Great War which wanted a tolerable solution. Forcing Northern Ireland into the South would have lead to a massive bloodbath of a Civil War, one which would probably cause massive loss of life in GB too.

Britain also ripped apart the Indian subcontinent and several African colonies, imposing artificial borders.

The peoples of India, Pakistan, and Bangladesh did not accept any possible solutions to the problem of becoming a nation together, partition was inevitable.

As for artificial borders - well, all borders are imposed in some fashion.

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Posted in: Gov't acknowledges first radiation death among Fukushima plant workers See in context

Poor reporting, as usual. The ministry ruling allows compensation to be made available, but does not ascribe the illness to radiation exposure - just that it may have had an effect.

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