Japanese geneticist declines Tahiti invitation

11:41 am on 7 April 2018

A Japanese geneticist has declined a French Polynesian government invitation for a study to see if the French nuclear weapons tests caused genetic mutations.

The president Edouard Fritch had approached the scientist Katsumi Furitsu in February after an uproar over comments by a French child psychiatrist.

Christian Sueur had called for an independent study after recording intellectual disabilities and deformities which he attributed to genetic mutations.

Mr Fritch then accused Dr Sueur of causing panic and approached the Japanese expert.

According to La Depeche de Tahiti, she had turned down the offer.

The paper said she appears to have been dissuaded by the controversy surrounding the subject.

Until a decade ago, France said its tests were clean and had no effect on human health but Paris has since adopted a law offering compensation for victims suffering poor health because of exposure to radiation.

The law is being revised because of wide criticism that it failed to address the problems.