Anti-nuclear demo in Tahiti

7:10 pm on 2 February 2016

A small demonstration has been held in French Polynesia outside the French High Commission as part of a campaign to get compensation for the French nuclear weapons tests.

The gathering was organised by the Moruroa e tatou veterans organisation and the Association 193, which is an allusion to the 193 French weapons tests carried out in the South Pacific between 1966 and 1996.

The groups said they have collected more than 23,000 signatures urging a local referendum on the issue which they plan to present to the territorial assembly for it to then organise a local referendum.

They said they would keep collecting signatures until 2 July, which will be the 50th anniversary of the first French atmospheric nuclear weapons test in Moruroa.

Although France conceded in a 2010 law that the tests have had a negative effect on human health, practically all requests for compensation have been rejected.

View of the advanced recording base PEA "Denise" on Moruroa atoll, where French forces have conducted nuclear weapon tests until 1996.

Remnants of the testing infrastructure on Moruroa atoll Photo: AFP