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Police officers transferred to Tohoku disaster region elect to remain

Kyodo

A total of 67 police officers who were seconded to Iwate, Miyagi and Fukushima prefectures devastated by the massive earthquake and tsunami in March 2011 have decided to work permanently in the disaster-struck areas, National Police Agency officials said Saturday.

Two-thirds of the officers were originally from those areas but the remaining one-third are “believed to have chosen to settle in the prefectures after witnessing how local people live,” an NPA official said.

A total of 1,751 officers, including the 67, have been transferred to the three prefectures since the calamity.

Of the 67, a total of 36 were sent from the Metropolitan Police Department in Tokyo and the remainder came from 11 other prefectural police forces.

Forty decided to work in Fukushima, which was hit by a nuclear crisis, while 17 were posted in Iwate and 10 in Miyagi.

The seconded officers are in charge of patrols near temporary housing for evacuees, traffic control and investigation of crimes that capitalize on the disaster.