(El Estor, Guatemala) "Why are we gathered here tonight?," asked community elder Roberto Caal, looking around at the dozens of women, men and children gathering under the palm-thatched roof of the open-air community hall in Barrio Revolucion, in the municipality of El Estor, in eastern Guatemala.
"We have come to recuperate our land once again," he explained. "This land is for our sons and daughters."
Mid-July in Honduras has been a tumultuous time, as citizens have taken to the streets to make their voices heard in a struggle to gain more legal control over their land and resources and prevent the creation of further open pit mines.
The Ministry of Energy and Mines in Ecuador has ordered Ascendant Copper Corporation (Ascendant) to “immediately cease all activities intended to divide the community and disturb the citizenry’s peaceful life” around its proposed Junin Project. The company is facing numerous setbacks, including the recent order to stop community relations work, high levels of community opposition and the withdrawal of a major shareholder.
This analysis was undertaken following the publication of two letters accusing MiningWatch Canada of “genocide” and of keeping the Shuar people of Southeast Ecuador in poverty (see MiningWatch Responds to Ecuadorian Letters). The letters make special reference to Corriente Resources’ ‘Mirador’ project.
Prime Minister Stephen Harper is visiting Chile to mark the tenth anniversary of the Free Trade Agreement between the two nations. Representatives from Chilean civil society asked the Canadian embassy in Chile to facilitate a visit between the Prime Minister and communities affected by Canadian mining companies. Their request has been denied.
During the week of June 25, 2007, MiningWatch Canada received letters from two Ecuadorian Indigenous men, Rubén Naichap and José Aviles, accusing us of “Support for Economic, Cultural and Social Genocide of the Shuar people” and “Keeping the Indigenous People of the Amazon in Poverty”, respectively. These accusations are baseless and untrue and they represent libel against our organisation. They maliciously attack not only MiningWatch Canada but also those people and organizations in Ecuador that have expressed legitimate concerns about mining.
Department of San Marcos, Guatemala June 18, 2007 Text: Saqrik / Photography, Translation and Captions: MiMundo.org
Peoples’ right to be consulted about industrial mega-projects is legally established by international agreements, built into national legislation and constitutions, and thrown about in the discourse of resource extraction companies the world over.
OTTAWA, ONTARIO- Employees of Ascendant Copper Corporation continue to face limitations when accessing the concession at their Junin project due to local opposition to the project, an issue that was downplayed in Ascendant Copper's current prospectus.
The opposition has intensified lately due to severe -and documented- human rights violations taking place in the Junin area. Contrary to ...