21 Aug 2002

Bomb test site workers in French Polynesia want medical help and possible compensation

6:03 pm on 21 August 2002

More than 1-thousand people who worked at two nuclear test sites in French Polynesia want full medical follow-up and possible compensation, after a study showing higher cancer rates among the group.

The French news agency AFP reports that the group also want Paris to give official recognition to the consequences of its 30 years of nuclear testing on the Mururoa and Fangataufa atolls.

The group called Mururoa e Tatou, represents the 1160 former employees who worked on the two sites until the program was stopped in 1996.

The group's president, Roland Oldham, says they will present their demands to French Overseas minister, Brigette Girardin, when she visits the territory this week.

Mr Oldham says a new study shows that the cancer rate in the two atolls was 34 percent against a 17 percent French national average.