• Kyodo

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Three atomic bomb survivors who live in Brazil appealed Wednesday a court ruling dismissing their claim that the Hiroshima Prefectural Government pay them a total of 2.9 million yen in health care benefits, which they were denied due to a five-year limit on retroactive payments.

The appeal was filed with the Hiroshima High Court.

The Hiroshima District Court on Oct. 14 ruled that the plaintiffs’ right to claim benefits did not extend beyond a five-year window up to 2002, and Shoji Mukai, 77, and two others had filed lawsuits to receive overseas A-bomb victims’ allowances prior to that period.

The state began paying health-care benefits to designated A-bomb survivors overseas in March 2003, following a landmark decision by the Osaka High Court in December 2002 in favor of an A-bomb survivor living in South Korea.

But the Hiroshima Prefectural Government has limited the retroactive payment period to five years.

The focus of the court battle was whether the plaintiffs in Brazil would be granted the right to claim benefits beyond the five-year period.

The three, who immigrated to Brazil after the atomic bombing in Hiroshima on Aug. 6, 1945, separately made visits to Japan in the mid-1990s and were certified as atomic-bomb survivors, allowing them to receive benefits while they were in Japan.

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