Tahiti man wins compensation over French nuclear test

2:46 pm on 18 June 2020

The administrative court in French Polynesia has ordered the French state to pay $US178,000 to a victim of the nuclear weapons tests in the South Pacific.

Picture taken in 1971, showing a nuclear explosion in Mururoa atoll. AFP PHOTO (Photo by AFP)

Photo: AFP

Tahiti-infos reported that last year the man, who developed bladder cancer, had his application for compensation rejected by the French authority dealing with the claim.

Turning to the court, it was established the agency had not shown that the exposure to radiation was always below the threshold qualifying for compensation.

This opened the way for a fresh assessment and for the awarding of damages for suffering and care.

The report said the cancer was diagnosed in 2013 but that it had now gone into remission.

This year France again tightened the compensation law for those claiming ill health because of the weapon tests.

The compensation law clause defining the minimum exposure had been removed in 2017 because almost all compensation claims kept being rejected.

Between 1966 to 1996, France carried out 193 nuclear weapons tests in French Polynesia and until a decade ago, France claimed its tests were clean caused no harm to humans.