Support for Japan PM rebounds after disaster: Poll

A number of voters however criticised Naoto Kan`s response to nuclear crisis.

Tokyo: Public support for Japanese Prime Minister Naoto Kan`s cabinet rebounded following the March 11 disaster, but a majority of voters criticised its response to the nuclear crisis, a poll showed on Monday.

The Nikkei business daily said in its latest opinion poll that the approval rating for the cabinet rose to 27 percent from 22 percent in its previous survey in late February, while the disapproval rate remained unchanged at 67 percent.

The telephone survey was carried out on Friday, Saturday and Sunday, covering 1,603 voters across the nation of whom 61 percent gave valid responses.

Seventy percent of the respondents said they gave little credit to the government response to the accident at Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant, while just 19 percent praised its action.

Another opinion poll carried out by the Mainichi Shimbun showed that public support for the cabinet rose to 22 percent from 19 percent in February, while the disapproval rate fell to 54 percent from 60 percent.

Sixty-eight percent of respondents did not praise the government`s response to the nuclear accident against 28 percent showing support for its handling of the crisis, the Mainichi poll showed.

Seventy-eight percent said Kan had not shown leadership in tackling the aftermath of the disaster, it showed.

The 9.0-magnitude quake and resulting tsunami slammed into Japan`s northeast coast on March 11, killing at least 13,705 people, with more than 14,000 more still missing.

The monster wave also crippled the nuclear power plant, with radiation from the overheating reactors making its way into the air, land and sea, leading the government to impose exclusion zones around the plant.

Bureau Report

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