Sunday, April 3, 2011

underreported struggles 48

Ahni at Intercontinental Cry has some very important underreported struggles this month.

A group of Barriere Lake Algonquins discovered a Canadian mining company preparing for a new mining exploration project on their unceded lands. When informed of the situation in Barriere Lake, workers on site--mostly Crees from the Mistassini and Oujebougamou First Nations--voluntarily agreed to stop working and leave. Barriere Lake community members are now planning to maintain a constant presence at the site to stop any further developments.
Indigenous women from the community of Lake Tyers, in East Gippsland, Victoria, started a blockade against the state government's self-imposed rule over their community. The blockade officially went up on March 8, International Women's Day, in order to stop a government-appointed administrator and his staff from gaining entry to the community. In response to the blockade, the government withdrew several services meant for the reserve.
A shocking allegation was made against the UK mining giant Vedanta Resources. According to a recent report, paramilitaries were told at meeting sponsored by Vedanta "to warn Dongria Kondh villagers not to oppose Vedanta else they will be branded Maoists (terrorists) and then killed." The allegation stands in stark contrast to Vendata's "enlightened rhetoric" concerning the Dongria Kondh.
"While the rest of Panama was celebrating Carnival," observes Cultural Survival, the Ngöbe came together to elect a new president for the Ngöbe Bugle Congress, the largest Indigenous organization in Panama. The government of Panama--who recently ratified ILO Convention 169--has been attempting to impose a new electoral system on the Ngobe since 2010. The Ngobe are widely opposed to the imposition, which violates their rights as defined by the UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples... and ILO Convention 169.
Traditional Authorities from the autonomously governed Wixarika community of Tatei Kie, declared the Wixarika Peoples' "total opposition" to mining in the ceremonial center of Wirikuta in San Luis Potosí, Mexico. In a written declaration, the Traditional authorities state that "We will not hold back in the face of anything in its defense and we convoke the whole world to join the effort to avoid this terrible destruction of the sacred, definitively opposing the dark interests behind it, which seek our spiritual death."

And many more - please visit Intercontinental Cry and read about these struggles.

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