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The Boston Globe

World

Japan nuclear leak’s severity raised

TOKYO — Japan’s nuclear regulator on Wednesday upgraded the rating of a leak of radiation-contaminated water from a tank at a tsunami-wrecked nuclear plant to a ‘‘serious incident’’ on an international scale, and it castigated the plant operator for failing to catch the problem earlier.

The Nuclear Regulation Authority’s latest criticism of Tokyo Electric Power Co. came a day after the operator of the Fukushima Dai-ichi nuclear plant acknowledged that the 300-ton leak probably began nearly a month and a half before it was discovered Aug. 19.

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