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Ghana announces discontinuation of military protection for mining companies

Human rights violations in communities affected by mining have featured prominently during Monday's discussion of the report submitted by Ghana to the UN Human Rights Council in Geneva...In his statement Minister [of Justice, Joe] Ghartey said:: "It is true that at a certain point, joint military and police teams were protecting mining companies driving away illegal miners, but that was a short term measure and we have reviewed it and we don't intend to continue it." FIAN welcomes this announcement and will continue to monitor the deployment of military and police to the mining areas. FIAN, however, objects to the impression given by Minister Ghartey that conflict between security personnel and civilians is restricted to the issue of illegal mining. Victims of human rights violations by military and police include small-scale miners but also farmers who are denied their access to farmland or whose crops and fish ponds are destroyed. [refers to Newmont, AngloGold Ashanti, Bogoso Gold Limited, (part of of Golden Star Resources)]