SEOUL (Reuters) -The head of the United Nations’ nuclear watchdog will meet South Korea’s foreign minister and a top nuclear safety official on Saturday as part of a bid to calm fears over Japan’s plan to discharge treated radioactive water from its tsunami-hit Fukushima plant.

Rafael Grossi, director general of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), arrived in South Korea on Friday after wrapping up a trip to Japan, during which the watchdog approved the plan to release wastewater from the Fukushima nuclear facility into the ocean.

His arrival was met with protesters at Seoul’s Gimpo Airport, local media reported.

No expert behind the IAEA’s Fukushima report disagreed with the content, Grossi told news agency Yonhap on Saturday, hinting at his comment during an interview with Reuters one day earlier.

Prior to that, Grossi said during a Friday press conference in Japan that he wanted to also meet with the opposition party in South Korea which has been critical of the discharge plan.

South Korea’s government said on Friday it respected the IAEA’s report and that its own analysis had found the release will not have “any meaningful impact” on its waters.

The administration of President Yoo Suk Yeol has walked a fine line in its stance to Japan’s discharge proposal, as it tries to improve ties with Tokyo. But the plan has stirred anger and concern among South Koreans, prompting some shoppers to buy up sea salt.

Despite South Korea’s assent for the plan, a ban on food and seafood products from the Fukushima region would remain in place.

Opposition Democratic Party leader Lee Jae-myung has also said the government should try to halt the plan and take the case to the International Tribunal for the Law of the Sea.

(Reporting by Hyunsu Yim; Editing by Richard Chang and Kim Coghill)

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