A group of residents of the last evacuated town in the Japanese prefecture of Fukushima has been able to temporarily return to their homes more than ten years after the nuclear disaster, with a view to a definitive return in June.
From this Thursday, the residents of Futaba can return to sleep in their homes or in other facilities set up as temporary accommodation. The initiative affects 15 percent of the town, adjacent to the nuclear power plant that was affected by the tsunami of March 11, 2011.
More than 900 homes have been demolished in the last decade, among other reasons due to decontamination work in the area, and in Futaba there are many who do not even consider returning. Only 15 people from 11 families had applied to benefit from the new program until Wednesday, reports the NHK chain.
The authorities, however, want to encourage the area again by building an industrial complex and promoting public housing. “I want to build a city that makes people want to come back,” Mayor Shiro Izawa was quoted as saying by the Kyodo news agency.
Among those who have wanted and been able to return is Yoichi Yatsuda, 70 years old. “The day has finally come. I would like to prepare everything to be able to return to the life I had before the accident,” he explained to reporters after arriving in Futaba from neighboring Minamisoma.