18 May 2005

Bikini Atoll campaigner says Marshalls taking wrong approach in US compensation bid

3:42 pm on 18 May 2005

A campaigner for further compensation from the US over nuclear testing in the Marshall Islands says the government is taking the wrong approach.

The Marshall Islands is sending a team to Washington DC to testify in front of a Congressional hearing next week.

Marshalls officials say they'll present recent research which suggests the whole country was affected - not only four atolls.

A Bikini Atoll campaigner, Jack Niedenthal, says he doesn't think the scientific studies bear this out.

"And I think when the Marshall Islands government tries to take an approach saying all the atolls in the Marshall Islands were somehow damaged by the nuclear testing, it takes away from those four atolls that are still not adequately compensated for what happened to them."

However Mr Niedenthal says they can't close the door on anybody, and he wishes the other claimants well if they can prove scientifically that something did happen to their atolls.