Among communities where the entire population was forced to evacuate after the nuclear crisis started in March 2011, Naraha is the first town to allow all of its residents to return home permanently.
    
It is seen as a pilot case for nearby areas, with Prime Minister Shinzo Abe's government aiming to lift a raft of evacuation orders by March 2017.
    
But only about 10 percent of 7,368 registered residents of Naraha were expected to return home due to fears over continued nuclear contamination and uncertainty over whether
enough locals - particularly young people - would come back to restart the community.
    
Local mayor Yukiei Matsumoto pledged Naraha's rebirth would finally be able to commence.

 

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