Oaxaca: Profepa orders Cuzcatlán mining company urgent measures before spill of a mining dam in San Jose del Progreso

November 1, 2018
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@Michoacan Político


Since last October 12, the Federal Environmental Protection Agency (PROFEPA) has requested Cuzcatlán Mining Company, SA de CV, a subsidiary of the Canadian company Fortuna Silver Inc., located in the municipality of San José del Progreso, to carry out “measures of urgent application due to the spill of a tailings dam”. This contingency occurred on October 8, after heavy rains. The measures to be taken seek “to guarantee the protection and safeguarding of the environment and to avoid further damage to the natural elements”.

Given the indolence of the company that works in the area since 2011 to comply with these measures, on October 17, PROFEPA notified the company date and time for taking soil samples, an action that was carried out by a company contracted by Minera Cuzcatlán, accredited and approved by the Ministry of Environment and Natural Resources (SEMARNAT). PROFEPA personnel were present during the procedure. The results to determine the existence or not of contamination with hazardous waste is yet to be received. In case it is accredited, the actions and sanctions that according to law proceed will be applied, the PROFEPA warned in a press release.

Meanwhile, the inhabitants of the community of Magdalena Octotlán still can not use the water for cultivation or to bathe, and they fear the contamination of their drinking water wells, a few meters from the affected stream.

For more information (in Spanish):

El río está blanco y el agua para sembrar ya no sirve. Indígenas de Oaxaca acusan a mina canadiense (Sin Embargo, 23 de octubre de 2018)

Minera de San José del Progreso obligada a atender derrame en presa (El Imparcial de Oaxaca, 23 de octubre de 2018)

PROFEPA ORDENA A MINERA CUZCATLÁN, S.A. DE C.V., MEDIDAS DE URGENTE APLICACIÓN POR DERRAME DE JALES (PROFEPA, 22 de octubre de 2018) 

Solicita Defensoría a Profepa investigar posible contaminación del río Coyote en valle de Ocotlán (Pagina 3.mx, 18 de octubre de 2018)

Piden cancelar el proyecto de la minera Cuzcatlán por contaminación (Contralínea, 18 de octubre de 2018)

Derrame minero en Oaxaca alarma a poblaciones rurales (Rebelión, 17 de octubre de 2018)

La Profepa confirma derrame causado por empresa de filial canadiense en río El Coyote, Oaxaca (Proceso, 15 de octubre de 2018)

For more information from SIPAZ:

Oaxaca: Popular Community Trial against the State and the Mining Companies is carried out

October 16, 2018


Oaxaca: 3 years after the murder of Bernardo Vásquez, Fortune Silver forecasts large profits

April 21, 2015

INFOGRAFIA_-03

3rd Infographic regarding mineral extraction @ Educa

Three years after the murder of Bernardo Vásquez Sánchez, spokesperson for the Coordination of the United Peoples of the Ocotlán Valley (COPUVO), who was ambushsed on 15 March 2012, COPUVO members held a peaceful protest outside the Cuzcatlán mine in San José del Progreso for the anniversary of the attack, demanding that the intellectual author of the murder be revealed.  “There is still no justice for those who have been attacked.  On the contrary,  Fortune Silver Mines has announced its expansion.  This is the result of the authorities ignoring the case, which has significantly affected the human rights of the community,”  said a relative of the slain activist.

This declaration makes reference to the fact that Fortune Silver has reported that, for 2016, the Cuzcatlán mine will become one of the 15 most productive mines of Latin America, due to the investment of $30 million that will be made in 2015 to improve infrastructure and equipment, so as to increase daily production by 50%.  The firm indicated that it presently produces about 2,000 tons of silver and gold daily, placing it among the 20 most exploited regions in the country.  For 2016, the vision is that this number rise to 3,000 daily tons.

Nonetheless, Services for an Alternative Education (EDUCA) has published three infographics regarding the establishment of mineral firms in Mexico, toward the end of sharing data about the problem that leads to mineral extraction in the country.  EDUCA documents that the governments of Vicente Fox and Felipe Calderón sold off 52 million hectares to mining firms, corresponding to 26% of the national territory.  According to the General Coordination on Mining, a branch of the Economy Ministry, 870 mining projects are currently registered.  Oaxaca finds itself in 8th place.  The top three slots are for Sonora, Chihuahua, and Guanajuato states, which have 210, 113, and 95 mining projects, respectively.  Beyond this, EDUCA indicates that the profits seen by the San José del Progreso municipality amount to 1% of the 1.7 billion pesos that the Canadian firm Fortune Silver Mines expects to gain through its exploitation of silver and gold.  The conditions under which such concessions have been granted have involved the death of 4 individuals and the degradation of the social fabric of the local community.

For more information (in Spanish):

Ver la infográfica 1 (Educa)

Ver infografía 2 (Educa)

Datos de extracción minera alertan sobre pérdida de territorio nacional(Educa, 12 de marzo de 2015)

Oaxaca, en el top 15 de productores de oro y plata en AL; meta para el 2016 (Noticias Net, 13 de marzo de 2015)

Pedirán antimineros de Ocotlán diálogo con el gobierno local (Noticias Net, 16 de marzo de 2015)

Marchan por líder antiminero asesinado (Noticias Net, 14 de marzo de 2015)

Para más información de SIPAZ:

Oaxaca: presentation of report “Justice for San José del Progreso” (16 March 2014)

Oaxaca: Murder of the spokesperson of the Coordination of the United Peoples of the Ocotlán Valley (25 March 2012)

Oaxaca: Two opponents of mining in San José del Progreso are fired on (8 February 2012)

Mexico: “Mined land, the defense of the rights of communities and of the environment” (14 December 2011)

Oaxaca: Coordination of United People of the Ocotlán Valley close entrance to silver mine in San José del Progreso (14 March 2011)

Oaxaca: Civil Mission of Observation “Water is Life; Let us Defend its Existence” (8 September 2010)


Oaxaca: Detained and disappeared, anti-mining activists from San José del Progreso

December 8, 2013

Mina Cuzcatlán en San José del Progreso. Foto @SIPAZ

Cuzcatlán mine in San José del Progreso. Photo @SIPAZ

The Oaxacan Collective in Defense of Territory denounced the detention at 5pm on 5 December of Olegario Víctor Ruiz Martínez and his wife Salomé García López, opponents of the mining project in San José del Progreso and members of the Coordination of United Peoples of the Ocotlán Valley, as carried out by the Federal Agency for Investigation.

According to Marcos Leyva Madrid, representative of one of the comprehensive organizations of the Oaxacan Collective, after 12 hours since the arrest, the whereabouts of the detained was still unknown: “they continue to be disappeared, because no one knows anything about them, nor of what they are being accused.”

The collective has requested the immediate intervention of Defense for the Human Rights of the People of Oaxaca and of the commissioner for human rights of the Oaxacan state government, Eréndira Cruz Villegas, so as to contribute to the finding of the disappeared.

For more information (in Spanish):

Boletín Informativo: Detienen arbitrariamente a miembros de la CPUVO(Colectivo Oaxaqueño en Defensa de los Territorios, 5 de diciembre de 2013)

Detienen y desaparecen a pareja opositora a proyecto minero en Oaxaca(Proceso, 5 de diciembre de 2013)

La CPUVO Exige la Presentación con Vida de Olegario Ruiz y Salomé García, miembros de la resistencia contra la Minería en Oaxaca (Colectivo Oaxaqueño en DefeColectivo Oaxaqueño en Defensa de los Territorionsa de los Territorios, 6 de diciembre de 2013)
For more information from SIPAZ (in English):

Oaxaca: New death-threats directed against members of CPUVO in San José del Progreso

June 7, 2013

@ Colectivo Oaxaqueño en Defensa de los Territorios

On 16 May, death-threats were found targeting Pedro Martínez and his family, being members of the Coordination of the United Peoples of the Ocotlán Valley (CPUVO), on their land (“La Sanja”), San José del Progreso municipality.  Members of CPUVO, an organization of those opposed to the mining exploitation undertaken by the Cuzcatlán firm (a subsidiary of the Canadian Fortuna Silver Mines) in San José del Progreso, had been warned of a fire on the land, and when they arrived they found two written death threats on cardboard, perched on a tree.  The Oaxacan Collective in Defense of Territory, a space that comprises several civil human-rights organization from Oaxaca and Mexico City, expressed its concern in a pronunciation on these new death-threats.  It recalled that, before being murdered on 15 March 2012, the then-spokesperson of CPUVO, Bernardo Vázquez Sánchez, had also received death-threats which appeared in a neighboring zone of the San José del Progreso community.

For more information (in Spanish):

Comunicado del Colectivo Oaxaqueño en Defensa de los Territorios: “Nuevas amenazas de muerte contra miembros de la CPUVO en San José del Progreso” (18/05/2013)

Codigo-DH: Acción Urgente ante nuevas amenazas al CPUVO (18/05/2013)

Blog de la Campaña de Solidaridad Internacional del Colectivo Oaxaqueño en Defensa de los Territorios

For more information from SIPAZ (in English):

Oaxaca: Civil Observation Mission to San José del Progreso (30 November 2012)

Oaxaca: access to the Cuzcatlán mine is blocked in San José el Progreso (16 May 2012)

Oaxaca: Actions, denunciations, and mobilizations in the case of San José del Progreso (3 April 2012)

Oaxaca: Murder of the spokesperson of the Coordination of the United Peoples of the Ocotlán Valley (25 March 2012)

Oaxaca: Two opponents of mining in San José del Progreso are fired on (8 February 2012)


Oaxaca: One-year anniversary of the murder of Bernardo Vásquez

March 26, 2013

Bernardo

15 March marked the one-year anniversary of the murder of Bernardo Vásquez Sánchez, spokesperson of the Coordination of United Peoples in Defense of the Ocotlan Valley (CPUVO) and opponent of the “Trinidad” mine owned by the Cuzcatlán firm, which is a subsidiary of Fortuna Silver Mines Inc, located in the municipality of San José del Progreso.  During 2010 and 2011 Bernardo and members of the CPUVO received death-threats for which they responded with 20 juridical demands, none of which was processed.

Commemorating the one-year anniversary of Bernardo Vázquez’s murder, on March 15 a group of 200 people carried out a ceremony to remember this social activist, before the very site of the Cuzcatlán mine in San José del Progreso.   In accordance with the Miguel Agustín Pro Juárez Center for Human Rights (Centro Prodh), the entire group was arrested following their public act.  These events took place when members of a group supportive of the mine (transported in 5 trucks) blockaded access, including federal highways, to inhibit the free movement of the protesters, who were also fired upon so as to intimidate them.  There were no reports of injured persons, but among those arrested are found members of the Oaxacan Collective in Defense of Territory, of the CPUVO, residents of San José del Progreso, and members of the Miguel Agustín Pro Juárez Center for Human Rights, including its director, José Rosario Marroquín Farrera.

“A year after his murder, the violations of the collective rights of the people continue to be prosecuted by the mining firm, and there has been no institutional means by which to resolve this conflict.  This date leads us to recall the level of impunity with which the mining firms are operating; it also recalls the complicity of municipal, state, and federal governments with the implementation of these projects,” as is noted in the communique by REMA (Mexican Network of those Affected by Mining) that was published for the one-year anniversary.

For more information (in Spanish):

Bernardo VIVE en la lucha de los pueblos de Oaxaca (EDUCA, 15 de marzo de 2013)

A un año del asesinato de Bernardo Vásquez Sánchez se continúan violando los derechos humanos en San José del Progreso (Colectivo Oaxaqueño en Defensa de los Territorios, 14 de marzo de 2013)

Situación de emergencia en San José del Progreso (CodigoDH, 15 de marzo de 2013)

A un año del asesinato de Bernardo Vásquez Sánchez, REMA exige justicia para San José del Progreso, Oaxaca, México (Otros Mundos Chiapas, 15 de marzo de 2013)

Activistas hacen toma simbólica de mina en El Progreso, Oaxaca(Milenio, 15 de marzo de 2013)

Retiene grupo armado a 200 activistas opositores a una mina en Oaxaca (WRadio, 15 de marzo de 2013)

Opositores a minera y defensores de DH bien tras hostigamiento(Centro Prodh, 15 de marzo de 2013)

For more information from SIPAZ (in English):

Oaxaca: Opponents to mining in San José del Progreso are attacked (25 June 2012)

Oaxaca: access to the Cuzcatlán mine is blocked in San José el Progreso (16 May 2012)

Oaxaca: Actions, denunciations, and mobilizations in the case of San José del Progreso (3 April 2012)

Oaxaca: Murder of the spokesperson of the Coordination of the United Peoples of the Ocotlán Valley (25 March 2012)

Oaxaca: Two opponents of mining in San José del Progreso are fired on (8 February 2012)

Mexico: “Mined land, the defense of the rights of communities and of the environment” (14 December 2011)


Oaxaca: Civil Observation Mission to San José del Progreso

November 30, 2012

 

San José del Progreso (@Proyecto ambulante)

From 19 to 21 November, 19 national and international organizations carried out an observation mission in the community of San José del Progreso, Oaxaca, toward the end of making visible the human-rights violations committed against members of the Coordination of the United Peoples of the Ocotlán Valley (CPUVO), who since 2007 have resisted the activities of the Cuzcatlán mining firm, which is a subsidiary of the Canadian corporation Fortune Silver Mines.  It should be remembered that in the year 2012 there have been registered four attacks against CPUVO members and that, as a result of these attacks, two opponents of the mine have died.

At the conclusion of its visit and its presentation of a preliminary report, the civil observation mission “Justice for San José del Progreso” declared in a press-conference that is had observed the systematic violation of human rights in the region, together with a climate of insecurity, fear, and strong division as following from mining operations.  Spokespeople affirmed that the project had been imposed without the consultation of the local population, and they denounced the harassment directed against opponents of the mine, in addition to the existence of a strong relation between the mining company and municipal authorities.

For this reason, the mission called for the cancellation of the project and immediate exit of the firm, demanding that the federal government push for these steps as soon as possible, in addition to reparation for the social, environmental, and cultural damages incurred by these operations.  The mission also called on the state government to initiate an urgent process of reconciliation to evade future confrontations; it requested the state office for the Defense of Human Rights to publish a recommendation to protect human-rights defenders; and of the Cuzcatlan mining firm it asked that it change the location of its office for communal relations so as to avoid the traffic of heavy trucks through the municipality.

For more information (in Spanish):

Misión civil exige cancelar proyecto minero en Oaxaca (Proceso, 22 de noviembre de 2012)

Minera provoca inseguridad y violación a los derechos en Progreso, Oaxaca: misión civil (La Jornada, 24 de noviembre de 2012)

Video de la conferencia de prensa en el D.F.: Misión Civil de Observación“Justicia para San José del Progreso” (40 min.). Informe preliminar en español y en inglés.

Reporte del segundo día de actividades de la misión civil de observación “justicia para San José del Progreso” (Colectivo Oaxaqueño por la Defensa de los Territorios, 20 de noviembre de 2012)

Blog : http://justiciaparasanjosedelprogreso.org

For more information from SIPAZ (in English):

Oaxaca: Arrest of two presumed murderers of Bernardo Vásquez Sánchez (19 October 2012)

Oaxaca: Opponents to mining in San José del Progreso are attacked (25 June 2012)

Oaxaca: access to the Cuzcatlán mine is blocked in San José el Progreso (16 May 2012)

Oaxaca: Actions, denunciations, and mobilizations in the case of San José del Progreso (3 April 2012)

Oaxaca: Murder of the spokesperson of the Coordination of the United Peoples of the Ocotlán Valley (25 March 2012)

Oaxaca: Two opponents of mining in San José del Progreso are fired on (8 February 2012)

Mexico: “Mined land, the defense of the rights of communities and of the environment” (14 December 2011)

Oaxaca: Coordination of United People of the Ocotlán Valley close entrance to silver mine in San José del Progreso (14 March 2011)

Oaxaca: Civil Mission of Observation “Water is Life; Let us Defend its Existence” (8 September 2010)


Oaxaca: Opponents to Cuzcatlán mine are attacked in Magdalena Ocotlán; risk of greater violence

October 26, 2012

Policías estatales en Magdalena Ocotlán @ Educa

State police in Magdalena Ocotlán @ Educa

On 22 October, opponents of the mineral extraction overseen by the Cuzcatlán firm were attacked in Magdalena Ocotlán. The police has arrested two people who were carrying firearms and had threatened members of the Coordination of the United Peoples of the Ocotlán Valley (CPUVO) with death.  The CPUVO struggles against mining in San José del Progreso.

On the morning of the 22nd, workers from the Cuzcatlán firm began excavation work in Magdalena Ocotlán to introduce an aqueduct that would increase the amount of treated water from the mine located in San José del Progreso. This labor was carried out under the watch of 100 police from the Auxiliary Banking and Commercial Police (PABIC).  To this location arrived 140 residents of the Magdalena Ocotlán and San José del Progreso municipalities to demand permits for this type of work.  In light of the lack of information provided by the state and federal governments, protestors demanded the suspension of work and the departure of the police.  It was within this context that the police arrested two persons who were carrying a pistol and a knife and had threatened Ángel Vásquez and Leovigildo Vásquez Sánchez, members of the CPUVO, with death.  Furthermore, Ignacio Jesús Pérez was injured in an attack by the inspector of the directory of regional security when he asked to speak with the person responsible for the carrying out of this work.

In an Urgent Action released on 22 October, Services for an Alternative Education A.C. (Educa) demanded the suspension of the excavation work.  Also, the Oaxacan Collective in Defense of Territory pronounced itself in this way.  The Defense Institute for the Human Rights of the People of Oaxaca also published an alert so that municipal and state authorities undertake actions to avoid human-rights violations.  It should be remembered that the conflict between CPUVO members and the group surrounding the mayor of San José del Progreso, Alberto Mauro Sánchez, who favors mining, has resulted in the death of Bernardo Méndez Vásquez and Bernardo Vásquez Sánchez, both of them opponents of the mine, in January and March of last year, respectively.  Neither of these crimes have been investigated or resolved in a manner respectful of justice.

For more information (in Spanish):

Acción Urgente (AU) de Educa y AU de Flor y Canto A.C. (para firmar en linea)

Piden a Cué frenar obra hidráulica de la minera Cuzcatlán (Proceso, 23 de octubre de 2012)

News Oaxaca: Violencia latente entre San José del Progreso y Magdalena Ocotlán (24/10/2012)

Oaxaca adiario: Fortuna Silver, millonaria mientras San José lucha (23/10/2012)

gatoencerrado.net : Fortuna Silver alcanza producción record de plata: más de un millón de onzas en el último trimestre

For more information (in Spanish):

Oaxaca: Arrest of two presumed murderers of Bernardo Vásquez Sánchez (19 October 2012)

Oaxaca: Opponents to mining in San José del Progreso are attacked (25 June 2012)

Oaxaca: access to the Cuzcatlán mine is blocked in San José el Progreso (16 May 2012)

Oaxaca: Actions, denunciations, and mobilizations in the case of San José del Progreso (3 April 2012)

Oaxaca: Murder of the spokesperson of the Coordination of the United Peoples of the Ocotlán Valley (25 March 2012)

Oaxaca: Two opponents of mining in San José del Progreso are fired on (8 February 2012)

Mexico: “Mined land, the defense of the rights of communities and of the environment” (14 December 2011)

Oaxaca: Coordination of United People of the Ocotlán Valley close entrance to silver mine in San José del Progreso (14 March 2011)

Oaxaca: Civil Mission of Observation “Water is Life; Let us Defend its Existence” (8 September 2010)