NEW MEASURES BY GOV.- ANTI MINING NATIONAL STRIKE

By , May 25, 2007
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GOVERNMENT FIRM AGAINST MINING CONCESSIONS- REJECTION OF ENVIRONMNETAL IMPACT STUDY, AND NEW LEGISLATION ON THE HORIZON

JUNE 5TH, NATIONAL ANTI-MINING PROTEST PLANNED

Today´s El Comercio Newspaper reported Ecuador´s President Correa recent speach against the mining concessions in Ecuador, where he stated that it´s a disaster how they have been issued and that his government will review every single one of them. He said that that around 4,000 concessions have been issued, but that they have “created chaos and that certain areas they are on the brink of a civil war”

President Correa also stated that the communities were not consulted in the issuing of the mining concessions, and that “the law needs to be changed to guarantee collective rights”
http://www.elcomercio.com/solo_texto_search.asp?id_noticia=74458&anio=2007&mes=5&dia=3


This comes admist the government decision to reject the environmental impact study Canadian mining company Corriente Resources, and issued a stop-work order for the company . A similar stop work order was issued against Ascendant Copper on December 2006. (Reuters News Agency, 29 May 2007)

HUGE INCREASE IN MINING royalties is one of the proposals being discussed by the government- up to 80% according to one ministers of state- and which will be incorporated in the new mining law.
(Español: por favor ver el articulo de El comercio de arriba,, y Reuters))

June 5th has been chosen by civil society groups and communities from all over Ecuador to show their rejection to large-scale mining projects and large hydroelectric dams. The organizations are asking for immediate expulsion of mining and hydroelectric companies from the communities.

The strike is being led by National Coordinator for the Defense of Life and Dignity, and joined by hundreds of organizations and communities impacted by mining and hydroelectric dam projects.

The organizations taking part of this first-ever national strike are demanding the government rescind all the mining concessions for violating the nation’s Constitution, specifically the right to previous consultation. In addition, they are demanding from the government:

The Demilitarization and expulsion of paramilitary and armed groups from the areas in conflict.

That human rights violations undertaken by transnational mining companies be investigated and punished, and in particular those of Aurelian Resources, Corriente Resources Inc, and Ascendant Copper who were assisted by the military or paramilitary groups

The press comunique goes on to say that:

“…on June 5 we will initiate a NATIONAL PROTEST until the concessions are annulled, our rights are respected and peace reestablished in our communities”

below is the full text of the release

LEVANTAMIENTO NACIONAL DEL 5 DE JUNIO
  • Salida inmediata de las mineras e hidroeléctricas de nuestras comunidades.
  • Que mediante decreto ejecutivo se deje sin valor las concesiones mineras, hidroeléctricas e hídricas en aplicación del Art. 272, por haber violado los Art. 86 y 88 de la Constitución y se declare a Ecuador país libre de minería a gran escala.
  • Desmilitarización y retiro de paramilitares y grupos armados de las zonas en conflicto.
  • Que se investigue y sancione la violación de los derechos humanos cometidos por las empresas mineras transnacionales, y en particular la Aurelian Resources, Corriente Resources Inc. y Ascendant Copper S.A. con apoyo de las fuerzas armadas o grupos paramilitares.
  • Poner fin a la criminalización de las luchas sociales y ambientales a través de juicios y procesos legales en contra de los dirigentes y las organizaciones que resisten a las empresas extractivas.
  • Que se sancione mediante la Ley de Defensa del Consumidor por la propaganda engañosa y mal intencionada de la Cámara de Minería del Ecuador.
  • Que se garantice la libertad de expresión de las comunidades afectadas por las mineras e hidroeléctricas a través de los medios de comunicación.
  • Que el gobierno nacional demande a las empresas mineras e hidroeléctricas por daños y perjuicios.
  • Que se garantice la integridad física y no se tome represalias de ningún tipo contra los participantes en este levantamiento.
El levantamiento se iniciará el día 5 de junio a las 00h00.
COORDINADORA NACIONAL

POR LA DEFENSA DE LA VIDA Y LA SOBERANIA

coor_nacionaldvs@yahoo.es

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