French Environmentalists Condemn Hollande’s Tahiti Speech

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Pacific Islands Development Program, East-West Center With Support From Center for Pacific Islands Studies, University of Hawai‘i

President acknowledged nuclear testing impacts, calls for ‘turning the page’

WELLINGTON, New Zealand (Radio New Zealand International, Feb. 25, 2016) – An umbrella group of French environmental organisations has condemned the announcements made in Tahiti by the French president Francois Hollande about helping nuclear weapons test victims.

Mr Hollande this week acknowledged that the 193 tests had a detrimental impact and promised to expand compensation payments.

But the anti-nuclear environmental federation wonders if a page can be turned as suggested by the president if the toxic waste is still there and weakened atolls risk collapsing.

It said only 19 out of 2,000 applications for compensation have been accepted.

Its statement says France has to admit that it committed a crime in French Polynesia by detonating the nuclear bombs and that it has to repair the damage.

It says declassified documents show that France carried out the tests fully aware that they would irradiate the people in the area.

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