Francia indemnizará a 150.000 víctimas de sus ensayos nucleares (y una introducción)

30 Marzo 2009 · Nucleare / Nuclear

images15.jpg Explosión nuclear en Mururoa.

24/03/2009 El Mundo /EFE

El Gobierno francés indemnizará, con una primera partida de 10 millones de euros, a los afectados por los ensayos nucleares realizados en el Sahara argelino y en Polinesia, según ha avanzado el ministro de Defensa, Hervé Morin.

El Ejecutivo ha creado un mecanismo de indemnización “justo pero riguroso” para los alrededor de 150.000 trabajadores civiles y militares que pudieron verse afectados por esos ensayos realizados entre 1960 y 1996, explicó Morin en unas declaraciones al diario ‘Le Figaro’.

A esa cifra de posibles víctimas hay que añadir, dijo, las poblaciones de Argelia y Polinesia en el momento de las pruebas.

Según el ministro, una comisión independiente, integrada por médicos y presidida por un magistrado, se encargará de estudiar caso por caso y, si acepta una demanda, “la reparación del perjuicio será integral”.

“En contra de lo que ocurría hasta ahora, el demandante ya no tendrá que probar la relación de causalidad entre la exposición a las radiaciones y su enfermedad”, según el titular de Defensa, quien tiene previsto presentar hoy el proyecto de ley que regula el proceso de compensaciones.

Entre 1960 y 1966 Francia realizó un total de 210 ensayos nucleares en el Sahara argelino y en los atolones de Fangataufa y Mururoa, en la Polinesia.

“Ya es hora” de abordar una cuestión a la que las autoridades francesas no han querido hacer frente durante años porque, según Morin, creían que “abrir la puerta a las compensaciones supondría una amenaza para mantener una fuerza disuasoria nuclear creíble”.
Effects of French nuclear testing on the Gambiers (Answers.com)

(Due to the controversy surrounding the next section, each paragraph will be cited with a source or multiple sources where available. In some cases, the professional media has not been allowed to research this issue properly, due to the French government’s restriction on foreign travel to the Gambiers. As a result, only first hand, previously unpublished information is available for certain facts. Stephen Midgley provides these facts. He lived on these islands for seven months from January to July 1993 and was able to interview many of the local islanders in depth over that time.)

The Gambiers served as a logistical staging base for French nuclear testing activity in Mururoa. During this time, the French military dragged chain through some of the coral reef beds to cut a wider and deeper channel for deep draft vessels. Subsequently, the reef fish population became infected with a disease which makes most of them inedible to humans (consumption produces symptoms including painful rashes, sensitivity to light and itching which can persist for weeks and recur occasionally).[2][3]
Mangareva

Additionally, during the above-ground testing, local islanders were not provided with adequate protection, being housed in a sheet metal warehouse structure, with open ventilation to the outside. Many locals allegedly suspect that they were exposed to high levels of radiation, and that their island continues to produce food that is not fit for consumption. Anecdotal reports of high cancer rates continue. [2][4]

French military vessels visited the area (as of 1993) every six months collecting specimens of water, food, human hair and other material, as well as taking detailed accounts of births, deaths and other demographic events, presumably for on-going research into the effects of the nuclear testing. The results of this research are not known to be published anywhere. Many islanders resent this secrecy and suspect it is because they are experiencing serious consequences of the nuclear testing on Mururoa.[5]
Akamaru Island

Until the French government releases more data, the truth of these allegations will remain unknown.

The local islanders believe that the sinking of the Rainbow Warrior was related to these issues.[6]

The Rainbow Warrior was scheduled to visit Mangareva to take environmental and human samples for independent analysis. Many residents reportedly believe that this is a primary reason why the French government chose to destroy the Rainbow Warrior, rather than to permit public examination of the effects of the testing program. (Source: Stephen Midgley, interviews and research on site, January to July 1993)[7][8]

References

1. ^ http://gl.wikipedia.org/wiki/Illas_Gambier
2. ^ a b Stephen Midgley, interviews and research on site, January to July 1993.
3. ^ “French accused of Pacific nuclear cover-up”. The Guardian. Retrieved on 2008-05-12.
4. ^ Bulletin of the Atomic Sciences
5. ^ Stephen Midgley, interviews and research on site, January to July 1993. Additionally Mr. Midgley personally witnessed a French naval vessel arrive at the islands, interact with the islanders and depart after 2-3 days in 1993.
6. ^ Stephen Midgley, interviews and research on site, January to July 1993
7. ^ “Rainbow Warrior”. Greenpeace. Retrieved on 2008-05-12.
8. ^ “Greenpeace marks bombing anniversary”. BBC News. Retrieved on 2008-05-12.

* Jared Diamond, Collapse: How Societies Choose to Fail or Succeed (2005), Ch. 3

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