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US nuclear weapons impact on Rongelap


Marshall Islands Senator: US nuclear weapons impact on Rongelap

Senator Abacca Anjain-Maddison from Rongelap, in the Marshall Islands, will be in Aotearoa in the second week of December 2004. This is a rare opportunity to hear a speaker from Rongelap talk about the impact of US nuclear weapons testing there, and the ongoing struggle to get compensation and medical assistance from the US government. Details of her public meetings in Wellington, on 7 December, and in Auckland, on 9 December, are below.

When the US government signed the UN Trusteeship Agreement for Micronesia, they promised to protect the people, their island homes and surrounding ocean, and to assist them to move towards self-government or independence as determined by the wishes of the people.

Instead they exploded sixty-seven nuclear bombs in the Marshall Islands. Some islands were completely obliterated in the nuclear bomb blasts; and others were so contaminated that people may never live there again, nor safely gather food and other resources from the surrounding ocean.

On 1 March 1954 the US armed forces detonated a nuclear bomb in a test codenamed 'Bravo' - it had an explosive force almost 1,000 times larger than the bomb exploded over Hiroshima. Fallout from 'Bravo' contaminated an area of 7,000 square miles. Rongelap was directly in the path of the deadly radioactive cloud produced by the blast.

The people of the Marshall Islands were used as human 'guinea pigs' in the US government's insane pursuit of nuclear weapons supremacy. Their way of life has been seriously harmed, their environment irreparably poisoned, and they have suffered appalling health problems - including genetic damage which means that future generations will be similarly affected.

For more information about US nuclear weapons, ballistic missile, and 'Star Wars' weapons tests in the Marshall Islands see http://www.converge.org.nz/pma/rmi.htm


* WELLINGTON, Tuesday, 7 December *

Public meeting with Senator Abacca Anjain-Maddison who will speak about the impact of US nuclear weapons testing on the people of Rongelap, the ongoing struggle to get compensation and medical assistance from the US government, and plans for a Rongelap Peace Museum to educate about the horrors of nuclear warfare.

At 7pm, in the McKenzie Room, St John's in the City Conference Centre, corner Willis & Dixon Streets, Wellington. Organised by the Women's International League for Peace and Freedom (Wellington Branch), contact tel (04) 382 8129 or email pma@xtra.co.nz

There is a flyer for the Wellington meeting online at http://www.converge.org.nz/pma/miwgtn04.doc


* AUCKLAND, Thursday, 9 December *

Senator Abacca Anjain-Maddison will be speaking at the 'Human Rights in the Pacific: Problems, Progress and Prospects' forum to mark Human Rights Day (10 December). Other speakers on the panel are: Ben Kinah from Osi Tanata in Bougainville, Sarah Garap from Meri Kirap in Papua New Guinea, Virisila Buadromo from Fiji Women's Rights Movement, and Robert Newson, Kaumatua for Human Rights Commission, New Zealand

At 7-30pm, St Columba Centre, 40 Vermont Street, Ponsonby (close to Ponsonby Rd - with a large car park at rear of building). Supper will be provided, a gold coin koha would be appreciated. Organised by the Human Rights Network (with the support of the Human Rights Commission, Auckland); for more information contact Joan Macdonald, tel (09) 360 8001 or email joanmac@pl.net

There is a flyer for the Auckland meeting online at http://www.converge.org.nz/pma/miakld04.doc

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