16 Jan 2012

Tahiti test veterans dismayed at Tong Sang's changed stance

4:06 pm on 16 January 2012

French Polynesia's nuclear test veterans organisation has hit out at the former president, Gaston Tong Sang, for coming out against a proposed compensation law change.

Moruroa e tatou says Mr Tong Sang takes on the responsibility of breaking the unanimity of French Polynesians who are against the law adopted by France two years ago.

The group says Mr Tong Sang has declared that he will this week tell the territorial assembly that he is against a change proposed by Richard Tuheiava who plans to submit a new compensation law in the French senate.

Moruroa e tatou notes that this marks a change of position for Mr Tong Sang who in 2010 called on France to revisit the law offering compensation for some of the victims of the French nuclear weapons tests.

He had said Polynesia suffered psychologically from the weapons tests.

Although the compensation law for the first time acknowledges that the atomic tests weren't clean, it has been widely criticised for being too restrictive.