3 Dec 2013

Tahiti nuclear compo change seen as election stunt

2:39 pm on 3 December 2013

French Polynesia's nuclear test veterans organisation says it may just be politics that prompted France to extend the nuclear fallout zone eligible for filing compensation claims.

Moruroa e tatou says it took Paris a long time to acknowledge that its nuclear weapons tests affected all of French Polynesia although it had known the extent of the fallout all along.

The National Assembly changed the area from which claims can be lodged in a move coinciding with last week's ministerial visit to Tahiti.

The head of Moruroa e tatou, Roland Oldham, says it expects little to change as practically all claims are being rejected.

"It's only some kind of political manipulation because of the elections coming up for the mayor all over the place, in France and here."

So far 12 people have had their claims recognised out of more than 700 cases filed, which Mr Oldham says amounts to hardly more than one approved a year.