Nuclear bomb tests contaminate soils, while nuclear accidents and X-rays are a direct threat to our health. At a world summit this week, doctors called for more protection and awareness.

It was a central theme at this year’s world congress of the International Physicians for the Prevention of Nuclear War (IPPNW) – the consequences of nuclear testing.

The participants gathered in Kazakhstan to see the consequences first-hand at Semipalatinsk – a Soviet-era test site which was active between 1949 and 1989.

Spanning 18,500 square meters, Semipalatinsk saw 472 test explosions during these 40 years – 129 tests were above ground.

Semipalatinsk was closed after the fall of the Soviet Union and its subterranean systems destroyed.

The IPPNW is calling for a swift nuclear disarmament and a continued nuclear phase-out.

But it also says there’s a desperate need for more information to the public.

"We have to tell people: don’t let your child have an X-ray unless it’s absolutely necessary, don’t eat that jam from that contaminated region," Rosen says, "and don’t move close to a nuclear power plant."

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