Globe, Latin America, United Kingdom

‘Mine’ the gap

“Mining, social conflict and alternatives in Colombia and Peru” is a public event that will discuss the current situation of Human Rights Defenders in Colombia and Peru and will explore alternatives to mining.

 

Mineria. Foto Wikimedia Commons. Author Kjetil Bjørnsrud

Marcella Via

 

In the recent Colombian context, socio-political conflicts have led to an increase in violence, with high levels of internal forced displacement and land dispossession.

In 2014, 5,700,000 cases of forcibly displaced people were recorded, 1,194,174 of which occurred in Antioquia, a region known for its large mineral reserves.

During Juan Manuel Santos’ mandate, mining activity drove economic development in the country thanks to its inclusion in the National Development Plan for 2010-2014, titled “Prosperity for all: more jobs, less poverty and more security”.

However, while the plan offered financial protection to foreign companies giving free access to foreign capital, the social and political rights of the Colombian population became exponentially eroded.

Foto Wikimedia

In fact, the situation generated by the mining economic policies led to several breaches of International Law at different levels, including the Geneva Convention IV, the American Declaration on Human Rights and the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, among others.

Large-scale mining projects have also been strongly backed by the Peruvian government, as a source of revenue and to create jobs.

However, in both Colombia and Peru, these projects have had devastating effects at social and environmental levels. Some impacts include: health risks, food production disruptions, biodiversity loss and water pollution. In addition, local communities are often forcibly displaced, repressed and criminalised for protesting against the mining projects.

This is why the events such as “Mining, social conflict and alternatives in Colombia and Peru” are needed in order to analyse the current situation that human rights defenders face in Colombia and Peru in relation to mining operations.

Foto Pixabay

This particular event will also discuss much needed alternatives to mining activities.

This event is organised by a group of organisations: ABColombia, Peru Support, Group and CAFOD, in association with UCL Institute of the Americas and in close cooperation with CINEP and Red Muqui. It will take place on Monday, 23 April, from 6pm to 8.45pm at the UCL Roberts Building (Lecture Theatre 106), Torrington Place, London WC1E 7JE.

The event is free to attend but spaces are limited. For more information and to reserve a free ticket, visit Eventbrite.

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