Japanese,    Chinese,  German



Written Statement of the plaintiff Kazue Morizono

written statement presented to the court on August 28, 2015 (24th Civil Division of the Tokyo District Court) (translated in English)


About "Lawsuit Against the Nuclear Reactor Suppliers"
--The logic and significance of our claim--

1. Introduction

On March 11th, 2011 the Great East Japan Earthquake/Tsunami severely damaged the Fukushima No. 1 nuclear power plant. Since then the nuclear crisis has developed into one of the worst nuclear incidents in history, leaving a tremendous amount of damage that is still unresolved with few signs of recovery. If it were proven true that shortcomings in the reactors had triggered the crisis, there would be no doubt that the builders of the reactors should legally take responsibility for their products.

As the title implies, we will argue the point that the reactor makers are responsible for the Fukushima nuclear incident. So, we have filed a lawsuit against GE, Toshiba and Hitachi, the Fukushima No.1 nuclear plant primary manufactures. As you noticed already, there are some unique and hard-to-solve issues in this kind of litigation; at the same time this is why our litigation is extremely meaningful and significant. Now the first oral pleading is drawing near; so we would like to reaffirm the logic and significance of this lawsuit in the following paragraphs.

2. The No-nukes Rights

In the case of such an event as the one which took place in and around Fukushima Pref. in 2011, these reactor makers should legally take responsibility for their unlawful acts and product quality (see Product Liability Law); nevertheless, the legal channeling of liability system has relieved them of taking responsibility for the Fukushima nuclear incident. Namely, in times of nuclear incidents, plant makers are free from blame while plant operators are solely responsible for all, according to the provisions in the Compensation for Nuclear Damage Act (hereafter referred to as the CND Act). So, TEPCO, the Fukushima nuclear plant operator has borne all the blame for the Fukushima incident. Due to this system which is guaranteed under the CND Act, our claim will likely to be denied in court.

How irrational it is to allow the nuclear plant makers to be free from any responsibility! If such injustices go unchallenged, these irresponsible makers will likely keep building profitable and not-so safe reactors.

Therefore, we intend to argue in court that the legal channeling of liability system is invalid and unconstitutional. In other words, this system is violating the "No-nukes Rights" which guarantees us the right to live free from fear of nuclear power. So, we will claim in court that we are in dire need of a new right which answers the change of the times, referring to the right to the pursuit of happiness (in Article 13 of the Constitution). As a result, the "No-nukes Rights" will be put in the Constitution and take root in our daily lives like the rights to honor and privacy that have already become universal, although they are yet to be mentioned in the Constitution.

We have now realized the severity of disasters caused by nuclear weapons and nuclear power generation through a cascade of nuclear incidents which have occurred here and there. So, there are not enough reasons for us to accept to live in a society in fear of nuclear power anymore. It is not just our personal belief or sentiment to reject a life threatened by nuclear power; the "No-nukes Rights" will become a universal right for people all over the world.

We thus intend to claim the "No-nukes Rights" to be guaranteed under the Constitution in referring to the following two rights: A) to require the central government stop taking unnecessary/annoying actions (in Article 13); and B) to maintain the minimum standard of wholesome and cultured living (in Article 25). Moreover, the right to demand (also in Article 25) will enable us to insist that we are entitled to demand that the government abolish its nuclear policy as well as execute the long-delayed project of helping the disaster victims based on the "Child and Adult Disaster Victims Assistance Act"

When the "No-nukes Rights" becomes legally granted as a new human right, this will bring about a powerful momentum to the anti-nuclear activities elsewhere on a large scale.

3. The Legal Channeling of Liability System

With the help of various laws and agreements, the legal channeling of liability system has become the basics of the globally prevailing policy of compensation for nuclear damage. Disgustingly enough, this system allows nuclear reactor makers to simply concentrate on producing reactors and enjoy huge gains while being exempted from any responsibility for nuclear incidents. Under such circumstances, the nuclear industry and related establishments have kept proliferating worldwide for decades.

Thus, arguing in court on the legal channeling of liability system equals challenging the core of the nuclear power system. This litigation is worthwhile uniting together to fight across borders in holding up the ideal of international solidarity. The defendants in our complaint are only GE, Toshiba and Hitachi though; it is no exaggeration to say that we are challenging the powerful nuclear regime as well as nuclear plant manufacturers from every corner of the world.

We expect this litigation to be the most difficult of all; however, it is an epoch-making lawsuit of significant meaning. With a strong sense of duty, we attorneys are glad to contest for you, the 4,200 plaintiffs, against these strong antagonists.

We sincerely thank you for your understanding and cooperation.

Akihiro Shima, Joint Chief Attorney