Guerrero – briefs: Mining exploration continues in the Montaña region without permission from communities; reinstallation of the blockade against La Parota

Plantón CECOP. Foto @Willy Baldo Hernández Rojas

In the municipalities of San Luis Acatlán, Metlatónoc, Tlacoapa, Atlamajalcingo del Monte, Malinaltepec, Acatepec and Zapotitlán Tablas – in the zones of the Montaña and Costa Chica regions of Guerrero – the transnational corporations Hochschild Mining México, Camsim Mines and Zalamera Mining discovered deposits of gold, silver, zinc and other metals within an area of 500 square kilometers. In the communities of these regions there are at least 27 ongoing agrarian conflicts amidst high levels of poverty, illiteracy, poor health, unemployment, and staggering trends in migration – as well as a presence of paramilitary and insurgent groups. Valentín Hernández, judicial advisor of the Regional Coordinator of Community Authorities (CRAC), stated that the British and Canadian corporations explored the region without the permission of the indigenous Mixteco and Tlapaneco people who live there. He added that the federal government has already authorized 17 sites of mineral exploration and exploitation in the municipalities mentioned. The CRAC has already denounced that, in the first days of November, the corporation Hochschild conducted aerial surveys, by helicopter, over the hills of the region at no higher than 35 meters in the air.

Agrarian authorities urged the members of several communities and the CRAC to file a formal complaint against the unauthorized research and the aforementioned companies in order to safeguard their rights. “We cannot act if there is no petition”, said the agricultural attorney, Rosendo González Patiño. In response to the mining exploration, the CRAC, the Human Rights Center of the Montaña Tlachinollan and the Regional Coordinator of the Indigenous People of the Montaña have planned community assemblies which will begin on January 23 in the community of Jonotichán; municipality of San Luis Acatlán, and in Zitlaltepec; municipality of Metlatónoc, to determine how to proceed. “The important thing is to make decisions collectively and with the support of the communities because if the mining installations affect all of us, we all must think and make decisions”, said CRAC leader, Pablo Guzmán.

Additionally, on Sunday, January 9, members of the Council of Ejidos and Communities Opposed to the La Parota Dam (CECOP), representing some 20 communities, reinstalled the blockade that for nearly five years existed in the community of Parotillas, to prevent the access of the Federal Electrical Commission (CFE) to the land where the dam project is supposed to be constructed. At the same time, they demanded that the candidate of the coalition Better Times for Guerrero, Manuel Añorve Baños, remove the promotional spot on television about the dam because, they said, it is inciting the confrontation which they blamed for “what may happen.” On one side of the road that goes from Parotillas to the area where the dam is being planned, the community members set up signs with slogans aimed at the three candidates stating “don’t get excited” if you believe there will be a dam here. In the afternoon, the campesinos installed the blockade on one side of the road. The president of the ejido, Nemesio Valeriano Moreno, expressed that the intent is not to block the passage of vehicles in general, but rather only those of the CFE. He added that the blockade would remain for an indefinite period of time.

For more information:

Mineras amenazan en Guerrero las tierras de comuneros (La Jornada, 10 January)

Apuntan mineras extranjeras a zonas depauperadas de Guerrero (La Jornada, 4 January)

Organizan oposición a proyectos (La Jornada, 4 January)

El 23, la primera asamblea indígena para tomar acuerdos sobre proyectos mineros (El Sur Acapulco, 10 January)

Buscan mineras británicas y canadienses explotar plata, plomo, zinc y hierro de tierras indígenas de Guerrero (El Sur Acapulco, 10 January)

La Parota no va, advierte el Cecop a candidatos al reinstalar retén en Parotillas (La Jornada de Guerrero, 10 January)

For more information from SIPAZ:

Guerrero – breves: Simpatizantes de La Parota se manifestaron frente al TUA; Académicos entregaron al TUA una carta en contra de La Parota; Aniversario de Radio Ñonmdaa se celebrará a pesar de la persecución (15 December)

Guerrero – breves: Atentado contra periódico El Sur de Acapulco; Conflicto agrario en Jicayán de Tovar; Manifestación contra el proyecto hidroeléctrico de La Parota; Desalojo forzado de 350 familias en Puerto Marqués; Policía Comunitaria emite comunicado (17 December)

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