Demonstration against nuclear power in Brussels

In Brussels, some 1,500 people have taken part in an anti-nuclear rally. The march was held in the aftermath of the Fukushima disaster in Japan and 25 years after the nuclear tragedy in Chernobyl, and was part of international day of protest. Demonstrators urged the Belgian government to play down nuclear energy sources and to boost sustainable alternatives.

The nuclear catastrophe in Fukushima after the earthquake and the tsunami which hit Japan, have revived the hopes of opponents of nuclear power (photo: protests in Japan).

Protesters say that the Belgian government should learn from what happened in Japan and that it should not hesitate to close Belgium's oldest nuclear power plants by 2015, as planned. On the contrary, says Philip De Bock, one of the organisers of the rally: "We think that the government should even speed up the process of leaving nuclear energy behind us."

The demonstration included some delegations of the green parties Groen! and Ecolo, and also from environmental pressure groups. Some older people used banners with slogans that they had already used tens of years ago (like "Nuclear energy? No, thank you").

"We have been critical of nuclear energy all our lives, and the facts have only proved us right", one demonstrator told the VRT.