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6 Jul 2017

Amnesty International (UK)

Urgent action smear campaign against environmental defenders

Members of the Centre for Environmental, Social and Legal Action (CALAS) have been the target of a smear campaign after they challenged the license of the San Rafael mining company in court. On 5 July, the Supreme Court of Justice notified it would provisionally suspend the mining company’s licence. CALAS members are at risk of further attacks. A renewed smear campaign against members of the Centre for Environmental, Social and Legal Action (Centro de Acción Legal, Ambiental y Social de Guatemala, CALAS) has been launched, calling them “opponents” and “manipulators” after they challenged the license of San Rafael mining company in San Rafael Las Flores, south-western Guatemala. In previous days, people peacefully protesting the company’s El Escobal mine in Casillas, San Rafael Las Flores, were tear gassed and dispersed by riot police. On 29 June, paid advertisements in a national and a regional newspaper signed by the suppliers of the San Rafael mining company, used stigmatizing language against the organization…