• Kyodo

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Tourism levels at hotels and inns in the Tohoku region, which was clobbered by the March 2011 megaquake, tsunami and nuclear crisis, remained below 80 percent of their prequake levels in the first half of fiscal 2012, the Japan Tourism Agency said Monday.

Lingering concerns over the triple-meltdown crisis at the Fukushima No. 1 nuclear plant in Fukushima Prefecture, as well as a lack of sufficient accommodations in disaster-affected areas, are slowing the recovery of tourism in the region, observers said, noting the trend could drag down its recovery from the disasters.

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