A petition has been filed with the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights by the National Lawyers guild and a number of other human rights groups. The petition accuses the United States of a variety of abuses stemming from the decades long use of Vieques Island as a bombing practice site. For a number of years the United States would run live fire training on the island. In 1999 the United States was responsible for killing a security guard on the island when they dropped a 500-pound bomb for testing.

As a result of the accidental death the U.S terminated its live-fire training program on Vieques in 2003. The Associated Press has reported that families living on the island have suffered serious, long-term health effects as a result of the chemical fall out resulting from the Navy's bombings. Natasha Lycia Ora, a lawyer with the NLG told AP "There's a lot of information that remains unknown regarding toxic contaminants. People are unaware of what is causing their health issues and the continuous contamination of the island."

Lawyers filed the petition on Monday on behalf of ten Vieques residents who have fallen ill with cancer or on behalf of their loved ones. The NLG is looking to determine if the United States violated any human rights with their testing. The U.S has long denied that their testing has caused any damage to the health and wellbeing of the people or environment of Vieques Island. Annette Martinez, director of the Human Rights Clinic at the InterAmerican Law School in Puerto Rico told AP that if the US is found to have violated any human rights they will be seeking reparations in the form of improved healthcare.

In March of this year the U.S Department of Health and Human Services released a report saying they found no evidence that the cause of the residents' of the island illnesses was the fallout from the bombings. The island's people were not happy about this report and would file a law suit accusing the U.S government of "causing illnesses through harmful residues." The suit would later be dismissed. It is believed that the continuing clean up from the bombings will take another decade.  

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