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3 Nov 2016

European Center for Constitutional and Human Rights

German prosecutors close lawsuit against Lahmeyer managers for alleged displacement caused by dam construction in Sudan

"German managers won't face trial for displacement in Sudan dam case, ECCHR-Newsletter No. 44 (November 2016)", 2 Nov 2016

...After almost five years of investigations and the gathering of evidence from several witnesses, prosecutors in Frankfurt am Main closed the proceedings against two managers from the German firm Lahmeyer International GmbH.  The case showed the negative impacts on economic and social human rights that often go hand in hand with infrastructure projects in authoritarian states.  The German company was closely involved in the construction of the Merowe Dam in northern Sudan. When the dam became operational in 2008, more than 30 villages were flooded, forcing over 4,700 families to leave their homes. The prosecutors decided they couldn’t establish any intent on the part of the suspects . In May 2010, a criminal complaint was submitted against Lahmeyer staff by those affected by the flooding, with assistance from ECCHR.  The complaint accused the managers of bearing part of the responsibility for the displacement of these families and the destruction of their livelihoods...