Technology Science - Radiation found on 2 Japan tourists in China

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Two Japanese tourists who flew into eastern China have been found to have radiation levels above normal, Chinese authorities said Friday.

A government agency said the pair's radiation levels were found to "seriously exceed" levels considered safe. The agency did not provide exact numbers, however, making it impossible to evaluate whether the finding contradicted Japan's own assessment of the situation of a tsunami-damaged nuclear power plant.

Japanese health authorities say radiation in the air has not reached dangerous levels outside the immediate area of the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear complex, though some people who live near the plant have been decontaminated.

China's General Administration of Quality Supervision, Inspection and Quarantine said on its website that the two Japanese tourists were given medical treatment when they arrived in Wuxi, a city close to Shanghai, from Tokyo on Wednesday. The pair presented no radiation risk to others, it said.

The agency said the two were not from areas close to the nuclear power plant in northeast Japan that has been leaking small amounts of radiation since being damaged in the March 11 earthquake and tsunami. The plant lies about 220 kilometres north of Tokyo.

It gave no other details about their condition.

China's watchdog earlier said an abnormal level of radiation was detected on a Japanese merchant vessel when it arrived at Xiamen port in eastern China on Monday.

The ship belongs to Japanese transport company Mitsui O.S.K. Lines and left Tokyo on March 17.

The statement did not give further information about the exact levels of radiation, the ship crew or cargo.

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