” * Korea says ban due to concerns over contaminated water leaks
* Seoul says Japan’s Fukushima data unreliable
* Japan says fishery exports safe, no radiation risk (Recasts, adds Tepco comment, changes slug)
By Meeyoung Cho and Mari Saito
SEOUL/TOKYO, Sept 6 (Reuters) – South Korea on Friday extended a ban on Japanese fishery imports to a larger area around the crippled Fukushima nuclear plant due to growing concerns over radiation contamination.
Further fuelling those concerns, the plant’s operator Tokyo Electric Power Co, or Tepco, said it was “very concerned” that radioactive water could flow towards a bypass it is digging to divert clean groundwater around the damaged reactors and into the sea.
The bypass is a key element of the company’s attempts to contain an escalating problem of irradiated water at the nuclear facility that was knocked out by an earthquake and tsunami in March 2011.
The Korean move – widening its ban to cover imports from eight Japanese prefectures, including Fukushima – came as Japan’s Prime Minister Shinzo Abe broke away early from a Group of 20 Summit in Russia to pitch Tokyo’s bid to host the 2020 Olympic Games, with assurances that the Japanese capital would be safe for all those coming to the Games. A decision by the International Olympic Committee is due on Saturday. … ”