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Last Updated: Thursday, 21 February 2008, 15:41 GMT
Veterans speak over compensation
Robert Carberry, veteran
The money is being provided by the Isle of Man government
A former servicemen from the Isle of Man who took part in British nuclear weapons tests more than 50 years ago has spoken about winning compensation.

The Manx government is the first official body to recognise the damage caused to soldiers on Christmas Island in the Pacific in the 1950s and 60s.

Eight veterans are to receive about 8,000 each, as agreed in Tynwald.

One of the men, Robert Carberry, said: "We were just told to turn our backs on the detonations."

He added they were told to put the heels of our hands into their eye sockets to stop the glare.

"We didn't have any protective clothing on, we just had our OGs, which were a jacket and long trousers," he said.

Duty of care

The veterans claim there is a higher incidence of cancer, deformities and skin problems among the group and their families as a result of the tests.

Eddie Lowey MLC said the island should not have to wait for the UK to settle the issue.

"The Isle of Man government I believe has a duty of care," he added.

"We shouldn't have to wait for the UK to settle this issue."

Servicemen in the UK are angry that they have not yet received compensation.

About 700 veterans - including 300 from New Zealand and Fiji - are suing the UK government for compensation.

UK veterans still fighting for compensation

Manx nuclear veterans compensated
19 Feb 08 |  Isle of Man
Veterans hoping for compensation
02 Mar 05 |  Cornwall
Servicemen exposed to radiation
12 May 01 |  UK News

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