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17 Sep 2013

Dorothy Kosich, Mineweb (So. Africa)

Chilean smelting victims sue Sweden’s Boliden

…Boliden paid 10 million kronor in the 1980s to Chilean company Promel in…Arica to dispose of 20,000 tonnes of…“smelting residues” that was…too dangerous to keep on site…The pile was unprotected and accessible by children and young people…High levels of lead and arsenic…[that] could be traced to the sludge were discovered in government surveys…Legal proceedings in Chile ruled Promel and Chilean health authorities are responsible for what happened. Damages were paid to the victims and the area was evacuated in 2009…[Recently] Arica Victims KB filed a…summons against Boliden…before [a]…court…in Sweden…The…investigation conducted by Boliden earlier this year at the behest of Arica Victims KB came to the same conclusion as previous investigations “namely that it has happened, of course, is deeply regrettable and terribly sad for those affected, but we believe that the responsibility is not ours…”