Tuesday, February 23, 2016

Polynesia: Holland recognizes the “environmental impact” of nuclear tests – The Point

François Hollande responded, at least in part, to an old demand of victims’ associations as elected Polynesian before whom he was speaking under a large marquee in the gardens of Polynesian presidency. On the occasion of his visit to the South Pacific archipelago, the second stage of a journey around the world which will then lead the Latin America, the Head of State said he wanted to “turn the nuclear page.”

It has solemnly announced a review of the conditions for compensation for victims of nuclear tests for thirty years by France, while recognizing the “impact” on the environment and health in French Polynesia.

“to recognize the consequences”

“I recognize that the nuclear tests conducted between 1966 and 1996 in French Polynesia had an environmental impact, caused health consequences” has he said. More generally, Francois Hollande welcomed “solemnly” the contribution of the French Polynesia nuclear deterrent. Without this territory overseas, “the France would not with nuclear weapons and thus the deterrent,” he insisted applause.

“Our people, and you are well aware, misunderstands the fact that after hosting the Pacific experimentation center, we are still compelled today to fight for recognition of the consequences “test, had arraigned before the president of French Polynesia, the autonomist Édouard Fritch. The Head of State also announced the partial lifting of a bolt that prevented many victims compensation.

The cause of many cancers

The law of January 5 2010, Morin said law named former defense minister, has made “progress”, but only “twenty” of compensation cases – over a thousand – have resulted, he noted. Thus, its implementing decree will be “modified” to “clarify the concept of negligible risk” referred to by law, but only “for certain categories of victims when it is shown that the necessary monitoring measures had not been up, “he specified.

the associations asked for its outright removal of this provision. The Head of State was warmly applauded when he also pledged that the government supports the development of the oncology department at the hospital in Tahiti. Polynesians consider that the tests are the cause of many cancers in the archipelago

A “meticulous vigilance”

Other highly anticipated announcement. “Nuclear debt ‘ or “Chirac billion” (in Swiss francs, the equivalent of 150 million euros today), an annual grant which aimed to offset the loss of business caused by the cessation of trials in 1996, “will be sanctified” and “level will be restored in 2017 to over 90 million euros.”

“the environmental consequences of the tests must also be processed” on the atolls that hosted the nuclear facilities, continued François Hollande. The State completed including “the decommissioning and remediation of the atoll of Hao” and those of Mururoa and Fangataufa will be a “meticulous vigilance”.

The attentions of appeasement

France conducted 193 nuclear tests from 1966 to 1996 on the atolls of Mururoa and Fangataufa. The Elysee stressed that his visit to Polynesia was to “solemnize a relationship with the Republic a little worn and wrinkled” during the previous five-year period

And the president has multiplied attentions. Depot a wreath at the tomb of Puvanaa a Oopa figure of anticolonial movement, dance and Tahitian Papeete market tour, detour Taputaputea Marae, on the island of Raiatea, a sacred place considered the crucible of Polynesian civilization …

the president will begin Tuesday the second part of his tour with a visit to Peru to “greet” the support of this country the success of COP21, before joining Argentina Wednesday and Uruguay Thursday.


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