Monday, December 3, 2012

underreported struggles 66, 67 and 68

More essential underreported struggles from Ahni at Intercontinental Cry. I have been unavailable the last few months so I am putting up number's 66, 67 and 68.

underreported struggles 66

A group of Naso protestors blocked access to the Bonyic Hydroelectric project in Bocas del Toro province, western Panama. The protestors, who issued an urgent plea for international solidarity, say that a new road will cut through an ancient archaeological site, which has already been damaged by bulldozers. They say the site is extensive and that they have collected a variety of ceramic shards, implements, huacas (pre-Colombian ornaments) and a piece of human bone from the area, indicating it was once perhaps a burial ground.

The Chumash Nation raised numerous concerns over the proposed Diablo Canyon Seismic project off the Central Coast of California. Pacific Gas and Electric (PG&E) intends to carpet bomb approx. 580 square nautical miles of sea floor with powerful Air Cannons that will blast every 10 to 20 seconds for 42 days straight. The 260db sonic blasts, which will travel through the water and 10 miles into the earth's crust, will devastate the local marine ecosystem and possibly destroy fragile and sensitive Sacred Chumash Cultural Sites.

The Amoonguna people in Australia's Northern Territory issued a statement requesting the removal of all government work­ers from their community by the end of September or face charges of tres­pass. The Amoonguna are also refusing to sign another five-??year lease after being forced to accept the first one (along with 5 dozen other communities) in 2007 as a part of the government's draconian 'intervention' programme.

underreported struggles 67

In a stunning development, villagers in Kurukshetra, India, forced the Haryana Agriculture University authorities to fulfill their promise to completely destroy field trials of Monsanto's GM corn. The welcomed display came only after Monsanto officials--with the support of University staff--tried to sneak out the GM corn. Alert villages stopped them in their tracks.

The Batwa Peoples of southwest Uganda, after being evicted from their traditional territory in 1991, are finally returning to their homeland; but they can only visit, as tour guides. The Batwa are taking tourists on $80 treks deep into Mgahinga to encounter first hand "the lost world of the Batwa". Not all Batwa have been displaced. Over all, there are as many as 500,000 Batwa--more indelicately known as "pygmies"-- who continue to inhabit the rainforest that stretches from Cameroon to Uganda. However, they continue to face the same old threats: encroachment, logging,evictions, racism, health problems, extreme poverty and censorship.

Indigenous Peoples throughout Brazil are mobilizing to repeal a dangerous new law that opens the doors to a full-scale military invasion of Indigenous lands, prohibits the distribution of news lands, restricts autonomy, and permits the construction of various industrial projects (like the Belo Monte Dam) without consultation. Protests against the law known as Decree 303 are ongoing.

underreported struggles 68

Activists from across Canada and the world stepped forward in solidarity with the Unis’tot’en, who grabbed national headlines after evicting shale gas pipeline surveyors from their territories in the interior of BC. The Unis’tot’en have made it clear that no proposed pipelines will proceed in Unist’ot’en territories and that corporations, investors, and governments have no jurisdiction to approve development on their lands.

Alberta's Court of appeal dismissed Athabasca Chipewyan First Nation's plea for a review concerning the Crown's inadequate consultation before deciding to approve Shell’s Jackpine Mine expansion project. The First Nation is extremely disappointed and is currently reviewing their options to address the lack of adequate consultation with respect to Shell’s tar sands project.

Indigenous Mongolian herders, who have been evicted from their land to make way for a Rio Tinto gold and copper mine, have lodged a complaint with the World Bank which is providing US$900 million of financial backing for the project. The herders have not been adequately compensated for their eviction and loss of herd since the project began, and have their free, prior and informed consent was not obtained in the process of undertaking the project.

Visit Intercontinental Cry to read about these issues and many others.


Scott Hamilton said...

Hi Marty,

this is off-topic, but I've just found out that, to my absolute and ever-lasting shame, you weren't asked about the inclusion of a couple of your very interesting poems in the Oceania issue of brief which I edited earlier this year. Michael Arnold, who was helping me sound out contributors, thought that I'd gotten the thumbs up from you and that I'd sent you the issue, and I seem to have thought Michael had done the same job. All I can say in my defence is that I was a new father when I put the issue together, and my sense of time, and mush else besides, was rather scrambled!

Have you now gotten the issue of the journal you are owed as a contributor from Michael and Brett Cross? Please let me know if you haven't, and I will flick you an Xmas hamper of briefs and other goodies as some small recompense for my earlier blunders...

Best, Scott

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