Former Japanese Prime Minister Naoto Kan received an award in Germany on Saturday for his work promoting the phase-out of nuclear energy generation in Japan following the 2011 Fukushima nuclear accident.
During an award ceremony at the Frankfurt city hall, former German Environment Minister Juergen Trittin praised Kan as a “fighter” for nuclear phase-out and renewable energy.
Kan, 69, pledged his continued efforts to rid Japan of nuclear energy, saying in a speech that, “The accident made a 180-degree shift in the perception that Japan’s nuclear power plants are safe.”
A certificate was handed to Kan from a representative of EWS, a power company established in Schoenau, southern Germany, at the initiative of citizens against nuclear power.
Kan was prime minister representing the former Democratic Party of Japan from June 2010 to September 2011. He was in office at the time of the March 11, 2011, Great East Japan Earthquake and tsunami and subsequent nuclear disaster.
Japan has resumed power generation at some nuclear reactors that were taken offline after the Liberal Democratic Party took power from the then DPJ in 2012.