11 Oct 2013

French defence minister criticised over compensation woes

2:41 pm on 11 October 2013

France's nuclear test veterans have strongly criticised the defence minister, Jean-Yves Le Drian, amid their failure to get compensation for most victims of the more than 200 tests in French Polynesia and Algeria.

In a statement, the minister is accused of dispising them after he refused to take into account a Senate report which found that the 2010 compensation law practically helps no-one.

The veterans say he has also refused to accommodate two scientists chosen by them to be on the committee charged with compensation issues.

They concede that Mr Le Drian has accepted that the area where the law applies is being extended to cover all of French Polynesia.