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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

Kazakhs Call for Aid

ALMATY, Kazakhstan -- Soviet-era nuclear tests in Kazakhstan will affect the health of the local population for centuries and international aid is needed to ease the results of the deadly experiments, Kazakh scientists said Friday.

"It would take 300 to 350 years to get rid of genetic mutations caused by decades of nuclear tests," Aitkhazha Bigaliyev, director of the Kazakh Institute of Ecological Problems, said at an international conference.

The conference was convened to discuss the aftermath of decades of nuclear tests in Kazakhstan's northeastern Semipalatinsk region, where about 500 nuclear blasts were carried out in 1949-89.