Anvil Mining lawsuit (re complicity in Dem. Rep. of Congo, filed in Canada)
Snapshot: A 2004 armed attack resulted in several lawsuits and investigations occurring in the Democratic Republic of Congo, Australia, and Canada against Anvil Mining for alleged complicity in human rights abuses. All cases were dismissed in favor of Anvil Mining, except for a complaint before the African Commission on Human and People's Rights, which ordered the Democratic Republic of Congo to "prosecute and punish" Anvil Mining. This case profile looks at proceedings in Canada.
In October 2004, the town of Kilwa, Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), was the site of fighting between the Congolese Armed Forces (FARDC) and a small group of rebels. The armed forces launched an attack to take control of the town following a short occupation by the rebels, committing serious human rights abuses against civilians, including summary executions, arbitrary arrest, rape, and torture. Anvil Mining operated the Dikulushi copper mine near Kilwa. Witnesses alleged that Anvil Mining provided transportation (planes and vehicles) to the Congolese Armed Forces during this event. Anvil Mining denied allegations.
In November 2010, the Canadian Association Against Impunity (an association representing survivors of the incidents in October 2004) launched a civil class action against the company in the Quebec Superior Court. The plaintiffs alleged that Anvil Mining was complicit in the human rights abuses that occurred in Kilwa in 2004. In late April 2011, the Superior Court of Quebec ruled that the case had sufficient links to Quebec in order to establish the court's jurisdiction to hear the case. On 1 November 2012, the Canadian Supreme Court announced that it would not hear the plaintiffs' appeal.
- "Supreme Court won't hear appeal in Congo massacre case", Canadian Press, 1 Nov 2012
- "Congolese raise mining lawsuit in Supreme Court", Canadian Press, 26 Mar 2012
- "Canadian mining company accused of complicity in Congo massacre", Maclean’s [Canada], 8 Nov 2010
Rights & Accountability in Development (RAID), Global Witness, Action Contre l’Impunité pour les Droits Humains (ACIDH), Association Africaine de Défense des Droits de l’Homme (ASADHO/KATANGA):
- [DOC] No justice in Canada for Congolese massacre victims as Canada's Supreme Court dismisses leave to appeal, 1 Nov 2012
- [PDF] Congolese massacre survivors to pursue justice at the Supreme Court of Canada, 31 Jan 2012
- [PDF] “Significant step forward in holding Anvil Mining to account”: Statement by The Canadian Association Against Impunity regarding the ruling of the Superior Court of Quebec, 29 Apr 2011
- Supreme Court of Canada Case Information [court documents]
- [FR] Cour d'Appel de Québec: Association Canadienne Contre L'Impunité c. Anvil Mining Limited, 24 janvier 2012
- [FR] Cour Supérieur de Québec: [PDF] Association Canadienne Contre l'Impunité c. Anvil Mining Limited - Jugement, 27 avril 2011