10 Aug 2005

Concern about possible effect of nuclear fallout on French Polynesian women

4:17 pm on 10 August 2005

The French Polynesian nuclear test veterans group, Mururoa e Tatou, says it has special concerns for women who it claims suffer poor health because of the weapons tests.

The group has been lobbying on behalf of hundreds former employees of the weapons testing sites in the Gambier islands who claim that their poor health is the result of exposure to nuclear fallout.

The head of the group, Roland Oldham, says despite evidence of health problems the French government continues to ignore them.

He says the latest evidence suggests that not only the people working on Mururoa were affected but those away from the nuclear tests, including women.

"They've got the highest mortality - three times higher than anywhere else in the world. If the women get affected by nuclear fallout, it could go down to other generations. I think that is really bad for our people."

Roland Oldham.