14 Jun 2005

Another French court awards pension to nuclear weapons test victim

1:14 pm on 14 June 2005

A French court has awarded a lifetime invalid's pension to a former officer for contracting thyroid cancer as a result of exposure to nuclear weapons tests in the South Pacific,

The decision by a court in Brest comes less than a week after the landmark ruling by a court in Tours to grant the first such pension.

The court in Brest ruled that the officer's claim was valid, ending his four-year campaign to get recognition for his suffering after having worked at Mururoa during 31 nuclear blasts.

The size of his pension is yet to be determined.

Test veterans organisations have welcomed the court decisions and have called for a fund to be set up to compensate victims.

200 cases are still open and a inquiry has been launched alleging involuntary homicide as a result of the atomic tests.

The French defence ministry has said five defence personnel have already been paid compensation because of the tests.