Ascendant Going After Campesinos: December 21, 2005
I have in my hands a copy of the company’s legal denouncement in which it asks District Attorney (Prosecutor) to initiate investigations of the events of Saturday the 10th. The document is signed by the company’s legal representative (General Manager in Ecuador), Juan Carlos Bermeo. In the 2 1/2-page denouncement Mr. Bermeo never mentions that the building destroyed was a clinic. He only refers to it as an “inmueble”- a property.
Please check out the following Ascendant Web page to see for yourselves the true nature of the building that was destroyed: http://www.miningwatch.ca/updir/OECD_I_ACC_community.pdf
You will notice on this page a photo captioned as being taken in Junin. In fact this photograph is of their “model La Florida Farm” in Chalguayacu Bajo. This is just one example of the kind of lies the company has been spreading around.
There is also no mention of a doctor’s report proving any injuries were sustained by anyone. Mr. Bermeo only now asks the Attorney to authorize a medical check up of some of his workers, and claims they were manhandled and sustained “finger-nail wounds”. Whatever that is.
Mr. Bermeo identifies twenty-four people as suspects, all from communities adjacent to the mining site. In all he claims that a group of “about 150 people stormed the company’s building without provocation” (not the 70 they earlier claimed). He also mentions that two foreigners where present and observed the events, and claims they were identified as being from our organization, DECOIN. I want to make clear that these two individuals are not members of DECOIN. They were there as part of the International Observers program; which is not a DECOIN project. This program has helped considerably reduce the level of violence that emerged as a direct consequence of Ascendant’s presence in the area.
Regarding the accusation that things like computers and medical supplies were stolen from the building, the people who were there are adamant about the fact that there was absolutely nothing stolen, and that this accusation, as all others in the document, is completely untrue.