Chiapas: 5 years since the murder of mining critic Mariano Abarca

December 15, 2014

Mariano Abarca (@Frontline Defenders)

Mariano Abarca (@Frontline Defenders)

In a communique published on 27 November, 5 years since the murder of the anti-mining activist from Chicomuselo, Mariano Abarca Roblero, his family, organizations, and networks such as the Mexican Network of Those Affected by Mining (REMA) and the Mesoamerican Movement against the Mining Extractive Model (M4) once again demanded justice.  They affirmed again that Abarca’s “murder was motivated by his struggle against the Canadian mining firm Blackfire due to its extraction of barite, and the social and environmental consequences this has had in the Chicomuselo municipality.”

The groups reported that they had sent a letter to Mexican and Canadian authorities, which has been supported by 266 persons and organizations from 27 countries calling for justice.

They denounced that “those who had been imprisoned for Mariano’s murder have been released from prison, while the responsibilities of others linked to the firm and state who may have been involved were never seriously investigated.”

In light of this situation, they call for “a response from the Mexican and Canadian authorities to exercise justice for the murder of Mr. Mariano Abarca Roblero, and to deal with the corruption of the Chicomuselo mayor”; and that “the Canadian government abandon its policy of ‘economic diplomacy’ which leads 100% of the Canadian diplomatic corps to promote private interests.  Instead, we favor the adoption of policies based in respect for indigenous and human rights, and protection of human-rights defenders and the environment.”

They reported lastly that they will take the case before the Inter-American Court on Human Rights (IACHR).

For more information (in Spanish):

A 5 años del asesinato de Mariano Abarca Roblero por su resistencia contra la minería  canadiense en Chiapas (Familia Abarca Montejo, Fundación Ambientalista Mariano Abarca Roblero (FAMA), Red Mexicana de Afectados por la Minería (REMA), Otros Mundos A.C. y el Movimiento Mesoamericano contra el Modelo extractivo Minero (M4), 27 de noviembre de 2014)

Exigen justicia a cinco años del asesinato de activista en Chiapas(Proceso, 27 de noviembre de 2014)

For more information from SIPAZ (in English):

Chiapas: Denunciation of renewal of mining activities in Chicomuselo (21 August 2013)

Chiapas: Self-defense brigades against looting by mining corporations (5 March 2013)

Chiapas: two thousand march at the close of the “Chiapan Meeting of Unity against the Extractive Mining Model” in Frontera Comalapa (7 December 2012)

Chiapas: Second Forum “For the Defense of Our Mother Earth and Land; Yes to Life, No to Mining Devastation” (21 September 2012)

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

Chiapas: two thousand march at the close of the “Chiapan Meeting of Unity against the Extractive Mining Model” in Frontera Comalapa (7 December 2012)

Chiapas: Canadian delegation investigates mining abuses (2 April 2010)

Chiapas: Anti-mining activist Mariano Abarca killed (1 December 2009)


Guerrero/Mexico/Latin America: Grave challenges to Goldcorp and other Canadian mining firms

May 3, 2014

Imagen @ M4

Image @ M4

The Mesoamerican Movement against the Mining Extractive Model (M4) has published a communique entitled “GOLDCORP SICKENS ME!” in which it demands “that the Canadian firm GoldCorp Inc. engage in a corporate audit for the damages to health and environment that its mines provoke in our territories as well as on our governmental and non-governmental authorities,” given that on 1 May the Goldcorp stockholders will hold their annual meeting.

With reference to said Canadian firm, M4 indicated that “in terms of human rights as well as the environment, health, labor, and agriculture: it illegally appropriates lands and rejects the judicial resolutions against it; it observes agreements it has made with communities only in the breach; it violates collective rights when it perniciously evades and avoids free, prior, and informed consent.”  And with regard to the mining project of Carrizalillo, Guerrero, M4 specified that “much more incomprehensible still is the reality that in 7 of its mines, the company displays a certificate of its compliance with the ‘International Code on the Management of Cyanide’ even when it breaks leaching pools, as has happen in Carrizalillo, Mexico, where two people have died due to toxicity from exposure to this dangerous element.”

With regard to the project in Carrizalillo, for his part, the CEO of Goldcorp sent a document to the Secretary for Economic Development assuring the latter that “to date there exist no social agreements that have not been observed,” even while he minimized the reports of ejidatarios regarding impacts on health.  He attempted to “delegitimize” the demand of the ejidatarios, who request an increase in the rent for their lands paid by the Canadian firm, the very reason for which on 1 April they began a blockade on the access roads to the mine, thus disabling its operations to date.

It should be noted that the Work Group on Mining and Human Rights in Latin America presented a report from the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights which affirms that between 50 and 70% of mining activity in Latin America is carried out by Canadian firms and that mineral extraction is the industrial sector which provokes the most denunciations and complaints regarding human-rights violations.  Mexico is the American country in which Canadian companies have most activity ($20 billion), and the Work Group further observes that, as a consequence of this model, in the cases in question grave environmental, social, economic, and cultural impacts have been denounced, in addition to violations to several rights, including the right to life, physical integrity, and property for the communities which neighbor these respective mining projects.

For more information (in Spanish):

Acción de denuncia: GoldCorp no merece premios, exigimos justicia(Movimiento M4, 28 de abril de 2014)

Pide la minera Gold Corp al gobierno que intervenga en el conflicto de Carrizalillo (Red Mexicana de Afectados por la Minería – REMA, 26 de abril de 2014)

Daños a la salud por minería a cielo abierto de la canadiense GoldCorp(Red Mexicana de Afectados por la Minería – REMA, 27 de abril de 2014)

El impacto de la minería canadiense en América Latina (El Ciudadano, 27 de abril de 2014)

Informe presentado a la Comisión Interamericana de Derechos HumanosEl impacto de la minería canadiense en América Latina y la responsabilidad de Canadá (Grupo de Trabajo sobre Minería y Derechos Humanos en América Latina)

For more information from SIPAZ (in English):

Guerrero: Ejidatarios from Carrizalillo to sue mining company before the Agrarian Tribunal (29 April 2014)

Guerrero: ejidatarios of Los Filos close gold mine in Carrizalillo (10 April 2014)

In Focus: The unsustainability of the Extractive Mineral Model (May 2013)

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