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en/guatemala-indigenous-xinca-community-accuses-pan-american-silver-of-using-the-pandemic-to-collect-signatures-of-those-who-accepted-company-donations-includes-company-response#c208608

Xinka people of Guatemala and thousands of international supporters demand answers from Pan American Silver

Author: Earthworks, Published on: 6 May 2020

...The peaceful resistance to the Escobal mine is asking...why Pan American, after saying it is different than Tahoe Resources, is using the same tactics—like taking advantage of moments of crisis, such as COVID-19—to collect signatures and ID numbers from local community members who receive company donations. Will this information be used later to suggest Pan American has support for the mine?

The Escobal mine has been suspended for nearly three years as a result of community direct action and a Guatemalan Constitutional Court decision, which found that the Ministry of Energy and Mines discriminated against the Xinka people when it authorized permits for the mine. The court ordered the company to halt all activities while the government consults with the Xinka in accordance with international standards. To date, the consultation process has been fraught with irregularities and excluded the Xinka people from fully participating based on their customs and traditions.

“COVID-19 isn’t the only health crisis we’re facing. For a decade, communities surrounding the Escobal mine have fought to protect their health from mining activities. Guatemalan courts ordered Pan American Silver to suspend its operations during the consultation and this includes community outreach, which gives rise to tension and conflict. Pan American Silver should tell its employees to stay home and stop trying to buy support for the mine during this significant health crisis,” comments Luis Fernando García Monroy on behalf of the Xinka Parliament...

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