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Event: On May 28, 2013, HRN Will Organize a Side Event at the UNHRC on the Right to Health in Fukushima

The United Nations Special Rapporteur on the right to health is due to submit his fact finding mission's report on Fukushima to the 23rd session of the United Nations Human Rights Council (UNHRC). To mark the occasion, Human Rights Now (HRN) will organize a coinciding side event at the UNHRC in Geneva.


On the day, experts will appeal for immediate action to protect the right to health of women, children and others affected by the nuclear accident in Fukushima.

The event will be held on Tuesday, May 28, 4:00 until 6:00 at the Palais des Nations Room XXVII.

This is a side event organized by Human Rights Now and is co-sponsored by the Asian Forum for Human Rights and Development (FORUM-ASIA) and the International Movement Against All Forms of Discrimination and Racism (IMADR).

Since the March 2011 nuclear disaster in Fukushima, individuals and communities in Japan continue to be exposed to dangerous levels of radioactivity. Contaminated areas raise urgent questions about the consequent health effects for pregnant women, mothers, children and others residents.

Residents have a basic right to live in a safe and healthy environment, however, so far authorities have failed to implement sufficient protective measures and essential support that will allow them to exercise this right. The right to access medical treatment and adequate medical data about one's own body is being denied and this issue needs to be addressed.

In November 2012, the United Nations Special Rapporteur on the right to health, Mr. Anand Grover, visited Japan and conducted a thorough investigation of the situation of affected people. In May 2013, he will submit the mission's report to the 23rd session of the Human Rights Council.

This event will provide an opportunity for participants to learn from the Special Rapporteur's findings and recommendations about how the international framework of the right to health should be implemented in Fukushima, as well as in other nuclear disasters.

Speakers include a human rights expert from Japan, residents and civil society groups from Fukushima. They will talk about how the lives and health of local women, children and others in the Fukushima area continue to be affected after the disaster and what should be done to provide immediate relief.

Presentations will be followed by a Q&A session. 

Speakers (this event is held in English and Japanese)

Mr. Anand Grover - UN Special Rapporteur on the right of everyone to the enjoyment of the highest attainable standard of physical and mental health

Ms. Kazuko Ito - Secretary General, Human Rights Now

Mr. Katsutaka Idogawa - Former Mayor of Futaba Town, Fukushima Prefecture

Mr. Wataru Iwata - Founder Citizens' Radiation Measurement Stations (CRMS)

Ms. Atsuko Morinaga- President, Shinshu 3.11 Network

Medical expert  (TBA)

Admission is free.

For further information and pre-registration, please contact


HUMAN RIGHTS NOW: Human Rights Now (HRN), an international NGO in consultative status with the ECOSOC, is based in Tokyo with several hundred members composed of lawyers, scholars, journalists and concerned citizens. In July 2011, on behalf of a coalition of civil society groups in Japan, Human Rights Now made a request to the Office of United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR) for a Special Rapporteur to investigate the human rights situation after the disaster. In response to the request, Mr. Anand Grover, the Special Rapporteur on the right to health, visited Japan in November 2012. Recently, HRN submitted a joint statement, signed by more than 70 civil societies in Japan and worldwide, urging the IAEA and the Japanese government to take a rights-based approach in response to the nuclear disaster based on the recent preliminary findings and recommendations issued by Mr. Grover in November. To raise awareness of the situation in Fukushima after the nuclear accident, HRN NY has organized human rights seminars and a press conference to inform the international community about the ongoing crisis. (