Protest against mining in Honduras ends in repression

Protest against mining in Honduras ends in repression

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John Ahni Schertow
July 20, 2007
 

On Tuesday, atleast 12 people were injured and 59 arrested when Honduran police violently cleared several roadblocks set up by protestors
demanding the ratification of a law that would prohibit open pit mining – a process that involves the use of cyanide, mercury, and other heavy metals.

The protesters also called for public meetings to give people the chance to decide whether they even want the mining operations to occur; and additionally for mining companies — among them Goldcorp (formerly Glamis Gold) — to begin carrying out measures to mitigate their impact on the environment.

As I understand it, a law reflecting these (and other) points was put forth in 2003. In March of 2007 the National Congress approved the first articles — but in following debates any chance of ratification came to an end because the law was seen as ‘inappropriate to business interests’. The President of the National Congress however, publicly committed to approving the Law. (roughly translated and paraphrased from laprensahn.com)

From periodico26.cu via rightsaction.org – Salvador Zuniga, consultant of the COPINH (Coordinator of Peasant and Indigenous Organizations of Honduras), told AFP, “They came at us wielding clubs; we have several injured and 10 arrested.” The group had led the protest at a roadblock 120 kilometers north of the capital. (source)

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