Union wants troops tested for cancer

30th October 2007, Comments 0 comments

30 October 2007, AMSTERDAM (dpa) - The Dutch defence employees union, ACOM, on Tuesday called for all Dutch soldiers who have served in Iraq or Afghanistan to be screened for cancer caused by possible exposure to uranium.

30 October 2007

AMSTERDAM (dpa) - The Dutch defence employees union, ACOM, on Tuesday called for all Dutch soldiers who have served in Iraq or Afghanistan to be screened for cancer caused by possible exposure to uranium.

ACOM, in a letter sent to state secretary for defence Cees van der Knaap, referred to a recent ruling by an Italian court that granted compensation to the family of a deceased military official who died after being exposed to the radioactive substance.

The union said "a limited group" from the Dutch military may have been exposed to uranium during its work on the Balkans. It also expressed concern for troops still stationed in Iraq and Afghanistan.

"We know for a fact that arms used in Afghanistan and definitely in Iraq sometimes contain certain amounts of uranium," ACOM said in the letter.

"These quantities are much higher than the ones used in the Balkans," it added.

ACOM is also pressing for the publication of findings from a study performed by the Royal Institute for National Health and the Environment (RIVM) on certain types of cancer among those who served in the military in the Balkans.

The union wants the study to be expanded to include soldiers who were active in Iraq and Afghanistan.

[Copyright dpa 2007]

Subject: Dutch news

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