5 May 2008

French Polynesian nuclear test veterans frustrated over compensation delays

1:36 pm on 5 May 2008

French Polynesian veterans of the French nuclear weapons tests in the Pacific say they may have to take new action amid frustration at getting their claims for compensation recognised.

France has said its atmospheric tests were clean, and its government refuses to accept a link between the blasts and the health problems experienced by those who worked at the test sites.

The defence ministry has been challenging both the expertise and appealed rulings, prompting the head of the Moruroa o Tatou veterans' organisation, Roland Oldham, to consider a change in its campaign.

"Why not probably do some kind of action like a hunger strike maybe in front of the Senate in France wit the support of the international media."

Roland Oldham says if the legal process is drawn out over another decade all former workers might have died.