Thursday, May 02, 2013

Region of Guatemala under Martial Law to Protect Canadian Business Interests

A Canadian silver mine.  Local residents afraid their home and way of life will be irretrievably poisoned frustrated that their protests are ignored and the mine is treated as inevitable.

Now military, police and Canadian paid private security forces hold sway and civil rights are on hold. 

Does this make you proud to be a Canadian?
[Posted from Guatemala City]
Residents of four towns east of Guatemala's capital woke up to news that their communities had been placed under a 30-day State of Siege by the administration of President Otto Perez Molina, following anti-mining protests that turned violent. One policeman was killed, six civilians were wounded by rubber bullets, and a number of police cars were burned and overturned on roadways. Here is the government's official public announcement. Public gatherings in the area are banned for 30 days.

According to Guatemalan Defense Minister Col. Ulises Giron Anzueto Noah (shown at right, photo today by Carlos Andrino), 3,500 total personnel participated in operations to bring the "estado de sitio" (state of siege) into effect. Some soldiers entered the areas in armored personnel vehicles and tanks. Hundreds of police officers were involved, as were private security officers for the Canadian-owned Escobal mine at the center of the controversy.

1 comment:

Purple library guy said...

This is just one part of a much bigger situation; no doubt with Canadian connivance (albeit more private than government-level), there seems to be movement afoot to take the country back to the bad old days of dictatorship and mass killing. Disappearances have begun . . .

The only positive I can suggest is that the process seems to have accelerated rather suddenly just as the trial of Rios Montt began to drag in the current president and attempts were made to quash the trial. I have the feeling events surrounding the trial have forced Molina's hand, making him move faster, with less preparation and in a less favourable climate than the fascists would prefer. Hopefully the bastard gets turfed.

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