17 Dec 2007

French Polynesia's Temaru joins global list of mayors calling for elimination of nuclear arms

4:22 pm on 17 December 2007

French Polynesia's president and mayor of Faa'a, Oscar Temaru, has become the 1,937th mayor to sign an international petition calling for the elimination of nuclear weapons.

The petition arrived in Tahiti aboard the Peace Boat - a Japanese ship that has so far visited 126 countries collecting mayoral signatures and promoting international peace initiatives.

Roland Oldham of the French Polynesian nuclear test veterans group, Mururoa e Tatou, used the visit to issue a challenge to French president Nicolas Sarkozy to visit a memorial to the victims of French nuclear testing and to offer an apology.

"If Sarkozy was to come here, that should be his first move to recognise the colonial fact and especially to recognise the fact that France has done here 30 years of nuclear testing and they have done a lot of harm to our people and our people are still suffering a lot from this nuclear test."

Roland Oldham