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Nepali media and Japanese disaster

By Shyam Rai, Kathmandu, Nepal

Radio Nepal news editor Shyam Rai writes that the Nepali media covered the disaster in Japan from the very beginning. The first reason for this is that the incident itself was huge and newsworthy.

The second reason is that sometimes even small incidents taking place in Japan (which might not get space in other countries’ media) are reported by Nepali media because Japan is one of Nepal’s major donor countries and contributes greatly to its development.

At first the media focused primarily on casualties and losses caused by the earthquake and tsunami. Some broadsheet newspapers and radio stations carried the incident on the front page and as a top story respectively whereas some included it in their international segments.

All of them focused on casualties and the destruction followed by damages caused to the nuclear reactors in Fukushima.




Japanese tragedies stir nuclear debate in Indonesia


By Permadi Kencono Wulan

From Indonesia former DW-AKADEMIE trainee Permadi Kencono Wulan writes that almost all of the country’s media have been covering the events in Japan from the moments they began. Focus has been on memories of the tsunami that happened in Indonesia, the strength and fortitude of the Japanese people, the impact of the damaged nuclear reactors and on Indonesian eyewitnesses who had been living in Japan, alongside interviews with celebrities who have lived there.

News also stirred about Japanese adult film star Miyabi who had gone missing after the tsunami. Much news space in Indonesia was devoted to coverage of the evacuation and the impact of the nuclear reactors at Fukushima.


The impact of an exploding nuclear reactor

Permadi, who is head of new media at RRI Indonesia, highlighted early reports by Indonesia’s Metro TV on the impact of a nuclear reactor that exploded and the possibility of radiation. It communicated how this concerns the world community at large and Indonesia in particular because of the effects of radiation that might spread due to wind, sea water, birds and migrating fish.




Khmer coverage of Japan’s tsunami


By Raksmey Meas

Raksmey Meas, assistant lecturer at the Department of Media and Communication at the Royal University of Phnom Penh, reports that Japan’s catastrophe involving the recent earthquake and subsequent tsunami has yet again taken center stage in the world media’s attention.


Particularly in Cambodia, news related to Japan and its disaster racked up on front pages for more than a week following the initial shock on March 11th.


Regarding the focus of Cambodian media on this tragedy, news angles seem to be anything on the updates of the situation – death toll, possible nuclear explosion and rescue efforts, etc.




Asian media coverage of Japan in crisis

Recent events in Japan shocked the world. The magnitude 9.0 earthquake that hit on March 11th and the tsunami and nuclear disaster it triggered have been top developing stories for media everywhere. But the focus and style of reporting differ from one country or region to the next.
Here in Germany the media have devoted much attention to the nuclear catastrophe at the Fukushima reactors (see for example Spiegel Online's English-language coverage) and the resulting danger of radiation threatening human health and the food supply. Of course German news outlets also reported extensively about the rescue efforts after the tsunami and the aftermath of the devastating quake. Those stories, however, didn't take up quite as much space in the newspapers and on TV news broadcasts as Japan’s nuclear crisis. The reason behind this may be that Germans still clearly remember the aftermath of the Chernobyl nuclear disaster in 1986, but have never experienced a tsunami in their country.
DW-AKADEMIE's Asia blog asked former trainees to tell us how the media in their countries have been dealing with the events in Japan. Reports arrived from China, Nepal, Cambodia, Indonesia, Bangladesh and the Philippines. Over the next few days we'll publish a series of guest blog posts revealing what our community of journalists have to say about Asian coverage of the ongoing crises in Japan. First in the series is the view from China.