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Weapons of Mass Destruction (WMD)

12 Taiwanese sue Japan for compensation from 1945 atomic bomb

ROC Central News Agency

2011/05/23 23:04:44

By Mike Chang and Ann Chen

Tokyo, May 23 (CNA) A total of 13 Taiwanese and Chinese nationals, who witnessed and survived the 1945 Nagasaki and Hiroshima atomic bomb blasts, filed a lawsuit with the Hiroshima District Court Monday, each demanding 1.2 million yen (NT$426,000) in compensation.

The collective lawsuit was initiated by 12 Taiwanese, aged 67-97, including the family member of a survivor who passed away in 2007, and an 85-year-old Chinese man.

Among them, seven witnessed the Hiroshima bombing and the six others witnessed the bombing in Nagasaki.

The lawsuit marked the first of the kind filed by victims from across the Taiwan Strait.

The victims said the Japanese government excluded them from a medical aid program provided to all domestic victims because they are foreigners living abroad.

The government's indifference caused them to suffer mentally, they added, citing it as the main reason for them to file the lawsuit.

Among the Taiwanese victims was Chen Hsin-tzu, a 95-year-old dermatologist who was a medical student at Nagasaki Medical College in 1945.

He was treating patients when the atomic bomb was dropped 700 meters away from his facility. He came back to Taiwan after World War II and took residence in Kaohsiung County.

Monday also saw South Korean, American and Canadian nationals who formerly lived in Japan take part in the collective lawsuit.

The United States dropped an atomic bomb in Hiroshima, Japan on Aug. 6, 1945, killing 140,000 people. Three days later, it dropped another bomb in Nagasaki, killing more than 70,000. The bombings prompted Japan to surrender unconditionally on Aug. 15, 1945.

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