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Urgent concern for safety of human rights defenders of San Miguel Ixtahuacán following peaceful protests

Conflict near Goldcorp's Marlin Mine

by The Network in Solidarity with the People of GuatemalaCollectif GuatemalaBreaking the Silenceand Rights Action

Photo from Sandra Cuffe
Photo from Sandra Cuffe
Photo from http://www.flickr.com/photos/thirstyboots/4730975019/
Photo from http://www.flickr.com/photos/thirstyboots/4730975019/

We denounce the human rights violations and abuses committed today against peaceful protesters in San Miguel Ixtahuacán, Guatemala.  The protest, demanding compliance with precautionary measures ordered by the Interamerican Commission for Human Rights regarding the Marlin mine, took place without incident during the day.  In late afternoon, participants returning from the peaceful roadblocks were reportedly confronted and attacked by community development council (COCODE) members and mine workers in San José Ixcaniche.

 

According to participants in the protest, Miguel Angel Bámaca and Aniseto López were beaten and threatened with lynching; one bus including approximately 40 men and women have been illegally detained and some beaten in the community of San José Ixcaniche.  As this alert is being written, they remain detained.  We are deeply concerned that the lives of human rights defenders are at risk.

 

Contact has been established with the local Human Rights Procurator’s (PDH) office, the local Presidential Commission for Defense of Human Rights (COPREDEH) and police, as well as national and international organizations to report these acts.

 

We ask you to stay alert and be ready to respond when more information and action requests are available from local organizations supporting communities resisting unjust mining in Guatemala.

 

In solidarity,

 

The phone number of the San Marcos Police station in case any Spanish speakers want to call to urge them to send a detachment to free Aniseto: 502-7760-7744

 

Francois Guindon – pancho@nisgua.org– +502 4014 7804

The Network in Solidarity with the People of Guatemala, USA

 

Cynthia Benoist – collectifguatemala3@gmail.com

Collectif Guatemala, France

 

Jackie McVicar – jmcvicar@gmail.com

Breaking the Silence, Canada

 

Grahame Russell – info@rightsaction.org – +502 4955 3634

Rights Action, Canada/USA

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Comments

UPDATE: Tuesday, March 1st, ~10am

Update from the Maritimes-Guatemala Breaking the Silence Network:

In the end, one patrol unit arrived very late in the night, after people had dispersed. Many people fled into the mountains to take refuge. No one has been arrested yet.

Two people were seriously injured, neither could be taken to the hospital to receive any kind of medical attention. Human Rights organizations from the capital are on the way to San Miguel this morning and we will send more information as soon as we have it.

For the time being, please stay ready to respond to an urgent action to demand that those responsible for causing terror on the communities and those intellectually responsible for these acts be held accountable.

For more updates, please see the comment section on THIS POST.

Thank you......

For the information!

As terrible as it is, we need to remain ever so vigilant with these ridiculously greedy human rights abusing and planet trashing mining companies. ESPECIALLY GOLDCORP.......err....GOLDCRAP!

It seems there is no end to their madness.

Only through constant effort and decent informational postings like these can we have something done about it.

Certainly in a better world companies like GOLDCRAP do not exist, but until then, we need to stay on top of them.

Thanks again!

Tami

Update: Goldcorp response, community situation, context

An article explaining the events of February 28th, the Goldcorp response, a community update, and some background context is now online HERE.

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