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16 Mär 2016

Action de Carême and Pain pour le prochain (Switzerland)

Legislative gaps lead to abuses in gold mining

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[press release originally published 15 Feb. 2016]

Lax legislation in Switzerland encourages abusive practices by our [Swiss] companies abroad. In Burkina Faso, 14,000 people have been displaced to make way for three gold mines; the gold they extract is then refined in Switzerland.  Those displaced have lost all means of subsistence.  These are the findings of a new study by Action de Carême and Pain pour le prochain... Action de Carême investigated three gold mines in the country... The mines have caused the displacement of 14,000 people, whose rights have been flouted several times over: many have been deprived of their lands and of access to potable water.  Their harvests have diminished and hunger has increased.  “Before, we lived, but today, we only survive”, laments Florence Sawadogo (a pseudonym), a 25-year-old mother and one of the victims of the mines.