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GENKAI, Saga Pref. — Before a two-lane access road was built to connect it with other parts of the prefecture, the village of Genkai, nestled in high hills with deep ravines beside the Sea of Japan, was so remote that even locals called it the “Tibet of Saga Prefecture.”

But this town of 6,600 residents, almost in sight of the spot where the Mongolian invasion fleet was hit by “divine winds” over 700 years ago, ending Khubla Khan’s dreams of conquest and adding the word “kamikaze” to the lexicon, may soon be the site of Japan’s first commercial use of mixed uranium-plutonium oxide (MOX) fuel.

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