PRESS COVERAGE!! I love being wrong. They’ve been at it for 22.5 hours… and counting!
From Asahi News
Confrontational rallies seek to stop restart of Oi plant
THE ASAHI SHIMBUN
OI, Fukui Prefecture–With the planned restart of an Oi nuclear power reactor only hours away on July 1, protesters showed up in force, blocking a road leading to the plant and skirmishing with riot police.
More than 100 people the day before blocked the only route leading to the Oi nuclear plant, operated by Kansai Electric Power Co. Their confrontation with Fukui prefectural riot police continued in the rain during the day on July 1, with another 100 protesters joining in. They shouted “No to the restart!”
The protest started at around 4 p.m. on June 30, when about 100 people gathered near a tunnel, about 500 meters from the gate to the nuclear plant. They parked their cars in front of the tunnel to the plant.
Riot police officers told them to move their vehicles. However, they ignored the demand.
One protester replied, “If the plan to restart the operations at the nuclear plant is suspended, we will remove our cars.” Another said, “Protect (human) lives.”
Skirmishes occurred briefly between protesters and riot police officers. At night, others joined in the protest.
On June 30, another rally against the restart of the operations at the nuclear plant was also held in Oi, with about 500 people participating from throughout the country. The gathering, called “Stop the restart of the nuclear power plant! June 30 Oi gathering,” was jointly organized by anti-nuclear groups in the Kansai region and other organizations,
The participants in the rally included those engaged in anti-nuclear activities in municipalities hosting nuclear power plants, including the Ikata plant, operated by Shikoku Electric Power Co.; the Shika plant, operated by Hokuriku Electric Power Co.; and the Mihama plant, operated by KEPCO.
At the gathering, Keiji Kobayashi, a former lecturer at Kyoto University Research Reactor Institute, pointed out the possibility that a fault that lies below the compound of the Oi nuclear plant is an active one.
“We must block the restart of the operations (at Oi nuclear plant),” he demanded.
After the rally, the 500 participants marched to the offsite center that is being used by central government officials as a command center to monitor the operations of the Oi nuclear plant. Work to begin the restart of the No. 3 reactor is scheduled to begin at 9 p.m. on July 1.
While marching to the site, the protesters shouted, “We oppose the (planned) restart.” Some skirmishes also occurred between participants and riot police.
The representative of the protesters handed a letter, addressed to senior vice industry minister Seishu Makino, to an official at the offsite center. The document demanded that the government suspend the planned restart of reactors at the Oi nuclear plant.
From EX-SKF at:
(UPDATED) Ooi Nuke Plant Restart Protest at the Gate Still Going Strong, But More Police Reinforcement May Be on the Way
(UPDATE 2) Another rumor that the US’s ABC and Germany’s ZDF are in Ooi-cho.
The sound of drums is deafening. (I hate drums.)
(UPDATE) Journalist Ryusaku Tanaka just tweetedthat the employees at the nuclear plant, since the only road to the plant is blocked by the protesters and the police, arrived to work from the ocean, using a ferry boat. Tanaka says he heard it from a taxi driver who drove them to the ferry.
Further, someone else tweeted that the riot police who suddenly showed up had climbed the mountain to get there, because the only road to the plant is still blocked.
Both pieces of information are unconfirmed.
It looks like Mr. Iwakami is on the way to the scene, bringing in supplies and rain jackets to his staff at the scene who have been netcasting the protest all night on IWJ’s USTREAM Channel. Iwakami is at JR Fukui Station. Right now, it is 10 AM on July 1, 2012 in Japan.
A cleaner photo taken by someone at the scene:
There’s a rumor that more riot police on the way.