A French court has turned down a compensation bid from the families of former soldiers who suffered after nuclear tests by France in Algeria and French Polynesia in the 1960s
The latest case involves a dozen French veterans who contracted cancers after witnessing tests. The French court threw out the claim on a technicality because events happened before 1977 when the compensation law was changed. Veteran Gerard Dellac who suffers from skin cancer says: “ I don’t know whether I can fight on because so many years have passed.. you tell yourself next year will be better but it is not.” The plaintiffs, seven of whom have already died, were demanding five million euros. Diseases included cancers of the skin, blood and kidneys. There is some hope however for the veterans. The French government is debating new legislation which earmarks 10 million euros for compensation.