Don't miss

Replay


LATEST SHOWS

IN THE PAPERS

Trump and Clinton: 'It's all to play for'

Read more

IN THE PAPERS

‘Grozny 1999 – Alep 2016’

Read more

EYE ON AFRICA

Court ruling expected on Gabon's contested election results

Read more

MEDIAWATCH

Clinton's comedy turn

Read more

THE WORLD THIS WEEK

From Sarkozy's populist pivot and ‘Bahamas Leaks’, to failed Syria truce and Rome’s Olympic bid (part 2)

Read more

THE WORLD THIS WEEK

US police shootings: Race relations and the race to the White House (part 1)

Read more

THE INTERVIEW

Turkish troops to go further into Syria, says foreign minister

Read more

#TECH 24

Breaking the wall between technology and people

Read more

FRANCE IN FOCUS

Rural France: Challenges and opportunities

Read more

France

Prosecutors to appeal chemical plant explosion acquittal

Text by News Wires

Latest update : 2009-11-20

French prosecutors have said they will appeal a court ruling that cleared a subsidiary of energy giant Total and its former boss of responsibility for a chemical plant blast that killed 31 people in 2001.

AFP - French prosecutors said Friday they would appeal a court ruling that cleared a Total subsidiary and its former boss of responsibility for a chemical plant blast that killed 31 people.

"It is an absolute duty with regard to the deceased people and all the victims," said prosecutor Michel Valet, who announced the appeal after victims of the 2001 blast denounced Thursday's ruling.

The court in the southwestern town of Toulouse said there was not enough evidence to prove that negligence by the Total subsidiary Grande Paroisse had caused the blast.

The explosion erupted in a storage warehouse packed with 300 tonnes of ammonium nitrate at the AZF chemical fertiliser plant near Toulouse owned by Grande Paroisse.

The blast, which also injured 2,000 people and devastated 30,000 homes, came just days after the September 11 attacks in New York and initially sparked fears that it was a terrorist attack.

That theory was later dismissed by investigators who believe it was an accident.

The Toulouse court on Thursday also dismissed a bid to hold the energy giant Total and one of its former bosses responsible for the explosion.

Since the blast, Grande Paroisse has paid out 1.954 billion euros (2.5 billion dollars) in compensation to more than 20,000 victims, according to Total's figures.

Date created : 2009-11-20

  • FRANCE

    Toulouse court clears Total of reponsibility in AZF factory explosion

    Read more

COMMENT(S)