Use of Uranium in Munitions & Industry at the European Parliament
27th October 2000
On 25th October
2000 the issue of the use of Uranium in Munitions & Industry was
finally taken to the European Parliament Strasbourg. I express a special
note of thanks to 'Nibby' (Mr Richard David, DU Poisoned through exposure
in industry), instrumental in organising the event and also to Graham
Watson MEP who hosted and chaired it.
At a meeting on the evening before the event, Watson stated that he
had come under Governmental pressure not to host and pursue this issue,
which only resulted in him becoming more determined. He opened the presentation
in parliament, and then part of a French TV Documentary by Martin Meissonnier
was shown to give an overview on the use of Radioactive Waste in Munitions
and Industry. Following this, Mary Ripley-Gruzman gave a talk about
the work of the Medical Uranium Project (MUP). She presented scientific
facts with slides displaying the results presented by Prof. Durakovic
at the Paris Scientific meeting held a few weeks ago. She stated that
the MUP would work with and share information with any establishment
in any of the European countries but this would involve the MUP protocols
and overall control. (they will only carry out Science & Research
for the good and benefit of the victims of poisoning with Nuclear Waste
and not help in any Official cover up)
'Nibby' David followed Mary and he spoke about the 'secrecy' of the
use of Radioactive Waste in industry. The next speaker was Damacio Lopez
a seasoned anti DU campaigner. His home town in New Mexico is next to
a Uranium Munitions testing range. The community has endured an extremely
high level of health problems, with the signs and symptoms that ill
Gulf War Veterans are suffering from and in addition the terrible birth
defects and cancers. Damacio focused on the moral and legal aspects
of the use of Uranium Munitions. He quoted the United Nations sub committee
ruling where it declares such weapons are illegal.
In a question from the floor a Labour MEP claimed that the MoD had offered
to test the 30 Veterans that had tested positive but none had come forward.
I replied with the following:
1. There was no need for the Veterans to be tested again as they and
their Medical Practitioners had the results.
2. Is it not more important to test the thousands of ill Veterans whom
the MoD accepts are ill but they don't know why?
3. One Veteran came forward and was tested, the result being no DU found.
However the Veterans found this difficult to believe as this Veteran
was highly positive. With a little investigation the Veterans identified
that he had been tested for the presence of naturally occurring Uranium,
so of course no DU had been found and incidentally the establishment
concerned with the test confirmed that they did not have the facilities
to test for DU.
4. I also referred to the reporting of the Paris Conference by Martin
Meissonnier & Jonathon Carr-Brown and the MoD's Statement which
was it is their duty to ensure that the Veterans get the best possible
care. I pointed out that I had a letter from The Gulf Veterans Illness
Unit that clearly states that the Unit and the MoD Medical Assessment
Program is for Medical Assessment and advice and NOT care. Once again
the MoD misled the Public, Veterans and Politicians.
At first we were a little disappointed with the attendance. However,
Graham Watson MEP was very upbeat as those that did attend were very
interested in the issue and were also very influential MEP's. Some of
the MEP's stayed back for personal chats with us asking further questions
expressing concern and a determination to know more. I was encouraged
by Linda McAvan, Labour MEP for Yorkshire & Humberside (my area);
she expressed great interest and said she had been following the issue
on TV in the UK. So we came away very pleased with the day. Interviews
were given to the French TV
This is just the beginning. Graham Watson needs much support. An excellent
foundation has been laid. To take the cause further I propose that each
person who is actively concerned with the use of DU should present this
issue to their MEP and encourage others to do the same.
As the United Nations has no Law Enforcement capability then the countries
that choose to ignore the illegality of DU Weapons then they will get
away with its use. If the issue is actively pushed in the European Parliament
we may (must as a goal) then get it referred to the European Courts
of Justice. It is this court that can enforce the law of the UN upon
Member Countries of the EU.
(The views expressed in this document are my own)
The NGWVA is
now waiting for the European Parliament's response to the delegation.
Shaun Rusling said:
"We achieved everything we wanted to in bringing the whole compensation
issue to the European Parliament's Justice and Human Rights Committee.
The British government has failed to recognise our calls, and requests
from the Royal British Legion, for an independent inquiry. When you
look at it, 32 people have died from Creutzfeldt- Jakob's Disease and
they have had a public inquiry. But 468 veterans have died of Gulf War
Syndrome and their widows and families get nothing. There are servicemen
out there without proper medical care and support. I am glad the Government
has acted for the families and victims of new variant CJD, but we want
action for the widows, families and veterans who are all victims of
Gulf War Syndrome. Sadly, our members are dying now. That is the case
we have made to Europe and hopefully the European Parliament will now
add its powerful voice to our campaign for an independent public inquiry.
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