Taiwan rallies against 'unfair' nuclear power plant referendum (PHOTOS, VIDEO)

Hundreds of anti-nuke protesters rallied in the Taiwanese capital Taipei calling to vote down a referendum bill and terminate the launch of the island’s fourth nuclear power plant, amid mounting concerns since the Fukushima nuclear disaster.

The demonstrators stood to spell the word “STOP,” with
yellow and black signs in front of the building of the Taiwanese
parliament and chanted slogans like “Stop dangerous nuclear
power!”

The demonstration came a few days ahead the ruling Kuomintang
party’s plans to push through a bill to hold a nationwide
referendum and decide the fate of the nearly-completed nuclear
plant.

The construction of the fourth nuclear plant will only be
stopped, if the referendum achieves a voter turnout of over 50
percent, which is unlikely in Taiwan, according to the China
Post.

“Since so many people have spoken against the risky power
plant, the government should scrap the project instead,”
said
Liu Hui-min, a spokeswoman for the protest, referring to several
public surveys which indicated around 70 percent of respondents
opposed the plant, according to AFP.

Earlier this year in February Premier Jiang Yi-huah proposed
holding a referendum concerning the country’s fourth nuclear
facility which is 90 percent completed and due to start operating
in 2015, according to its operator the state-owned Taiwan Power
Company (Taipower). Yi-huah promised that the government would do
everything possible to ensure the safety of the plant.

Amid the growing fears of the islanders, Taipower says the state
will face power shortages without a new nuclear plant. The three
existing nuclear plants supply about 20 percent of Taiwan’s
electricity, however two of them are planned to be closed in the
near future.

There have been concerns about the Taiwan’s nuclear power plants
since the March 2011 Fukushima nuclear disaster in 
Japan, which resulted in a massive release of radiation after a
tsunami caused by an strong quake hit the island. 

Taiwan island is located near the junction of two tectonic
plates and their continuous movement results in frequent
earthquakes. The deadliest in the island’s recent history was a
7.6-magnitude quake that killed around 2,400 people in September
1999.

A little boy wearing hat with a yellow protest sign is seen at a demonstration against Taiwan's controversial fourth nuclear power plant at a gathering in Taipei on May 26, 2013 .(AFP Photo / Mandy Cheng)

This article originally appeared on: RT