Japan to set up crisis research center

July 26, 2004 at 3:19 AM
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TOKYO, July 26 (UPI) -- The Japanese government is setting up a network of experts to assess the dangers in the event of a crisis involving toxic gases, viruses or bacteria.

The Ministry of Education, Science and Technology will set up in 2005 a network of researchers at universities, public research institutes and ministries in charge of crisis control, to be consulted in case of an emergency including a terrorist attack, the Yomiuri Shimbun reported Monday.

Government agencies will be able to receive expert advice from specialists in the network on potential threats through a center to be set up within the Japan Science and Technology Agency, an administrative body affiliated with the ministry.

The center will keep a database of hazardous substances, identify the agent in the event of an emergency, and advise the government on appropriate actions. If necessary, the center's specialists will be dispatched to the scene to help handle the situation.

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