21 Apr 2005

Marshall Islands ambassador to US finds cancer study "extremely interesting"

8:22 pm on 21 April 2005

The Marshall Islands ambassador to the United States says he's keen to learn the US reaction to a recently released study on projected cancer rates linked to nuclear testing in the Marshalls.

Banny de Brum has described as extremely interesting the study by the US National Cancer Institute which says the estimated 530 cases of cancer in the Marshall Islands already attributed to the 1950s hydrogen bomb tests is set to double.

The study was prepared for next month's Senate hearings to review a Marshall Islands petition seeking more than three billion US dollars in additional compensation for nuclear test damage.

Mr de Brum says the study's findings indicate that the radiation exposure from the tests spread beyond the four atolls which the US government has long acknowledged as the extent of the blast fallout.

The ambassador says he looks forward to bilateral discussions with the US administration on this topic, and whether it thinks the NCI study justifies changes to existing medical care provisions.