Tag Archives: gold mining

Peru Mining Protest Turns Deadly in Puerto Maldonado

15 Mar

Andean people protest against Newmont Mining's Conga gold project during a march near the Cortada lagoon at Peru's region of Cajamarca, November 24, 2011.

[EF! Newswire note: the politics behind this story are tricky. We suggest reading more background on recent mining struggles to get a clearer picture of the context in which these protests have occurred.]

Peruvian protests against government plans to regulate small-scale mining left at least three dead and 50 wounded in the southern Amazon jungle today, the government said.

The miners are protesting against tougher penalties for illegal mining.

Local officials said police were far outnumbered by the protesters, who are trying to take control of the airport at the city of Puerto Maldonado.

The miners say the new rules will put them out of work, but the government says the sanctions will encourage miners to get the necessary permits.

An estimated 50,000 miners do not have a licence to operate.

Poisoned rivers

The government says large areas of jungle have been destroyed by illegal mining and large portions of the area’s waterways show high levels of mercury, used in the mining operations.

Officials say they want the miners to obtain the correct permits and to abide by environmental rules, but the protesters accuse the government of wanting to hand over mining concessions only to large multinational companies.

The latest protests erupted after talks between the government and the miners broke down on Tuesday.

Regional officials said more than 10,000 miners tried to seize government buildings, markets and the airport in Puerto Maldonado.

Regional President Luis Aguirre described the situation as “untenable”. “You can hear gunshots throughout the entire city,” he said.

Police have asked for reinforcements as 700 officers were outnumbered by more than 10,000 protesters.

Informal miners also held protests in two other regions, in Piura in Peru’s northwest and in Puno in the southern highlands bordering Bolivia.

Peru is one of the world’s major gold producers and high prices have sparked a boom in recent years.

The government has urged the miners to return to the negotiating table for more talks scheduled for Friday, but it is not clear so far if the miners will attend.

Reposted from BBC News


Reclaim The Fields Camp 2011, Romania

15 Sep

From September 21-30 the group Reclaim the Fields will meet in  Rosia Montana, Romania for their third annual gathering.

“Food, land, seed, water and indigenous knowledge are too important to be commodified or centralised in the well-known capitalist way. We resist the logic of making profit of our ways of life. We are working on and already practicing a consensual way of peasant life and alternative ways of living and farming together. Therefore we Reclaim the Fields!

We declare our solidarity with the people in Rosia Montana who have defended their land for 10 years against criminal corporate land grabbing, robbery and exploitation. Rosia Montana is a village in the Apuseni Mountains in Romania, under threat of being destroyed by a gold mining project in the name of profit.

We want to create a common space together _ share experiences and realities _ exchange skills and knowledge _ make the movement grow _ put our energies together _ reinforce local movements and struggles _ find the links between each other and other anti-capitalist and anti-colonialist movements_ celebrate our struggles together.”

To read more click here

Turkish Villagers Fight to Keep Gold Mining, Cyanide Out of Sahinli

16 Mar

Residents of a northwestern Turkish district on Monday protested a mining company for its alleged practices of leaching gold out of rock with cyanide.

Environmentalists and locals gathered in the Şahinli village of Lapseki district in front of the village teahouse, where the Environment and Forest Ministry was to hold a meeting to inform people about the gold mining process.

Davut Şahin, head of the village in Çanakkale province, said they would not allow gold mining in their village. The ministry meeting in the teahouse was canceled due to the protest, agencies reported.

The locals held banners reading, “We do not want any gold prospecting in Şahinli,” while some hit tin cans with sticks during the protest.

News reportedly spread among locals that a Canadian firm planned to mine the area using gold cyanidation, a method that dissolves gold in a cyanide solution in order to extract the precious metal from low-grade ore. Residents took to the streets in protest.

Read the rest here: