20 more A-bomb victims recognized
Nagasaki court declares government decisions not to grant certification were illegal
NAGASAKI (Kyodo) The Nagasaki District Court on Monday recognized 20 of 27 plaintiffs as having illnesses caused by radiation from the 1945 U.S. atomic bombing of Nagasaki, declaring illegal the government's decisions not to grant them certification.
Earlier this month, the government decided not to appeal rulings delivered by high courts in Sendai and Osaka in late May, both of which recognized all the plaintiffs in those suits as having radiation-induced ailments, including plaintiffs who do not meet new criteria set by the Health, Labor and Welfare Ministry in April.
The government worked out the new criteria this spring after it met harsh
criticism for its previous probability-of-causation formula that determines
the degree of risk from radiation exposure.
The new criteria set out the conditions for "proactive recognition," including having been exposed to radiation within a radius of 3.5 km from ground zero in Hiroshima and Nagasaki on the days of the atomic bombings on Aug. 6 and 9, 1945, and having developed as a consequence one of five designated disorders — cancer, leukemia, cataracts, hyperparathyroidism and radiation-induced heart attack.
Other conditions include suffering from the designated diseases as a result of having entered the vicinity of ground zero within 100 hours of the bombings, or having entered areas about 2 km from ground zero 100 hours to two weeks after the blasts and having remained there for a week or more.
The plaintiffs in the Nagasaki suit, eight of whom are already dead, branded
the probability-of-causation formula as based on "nonscientific and
The Japan Times: Tuesday, June 24, 2008(C) All rights reserved