Development Association in El Estor, Izabal, denounces threats from ex workers of mining company CGN

Past June the 12th, the Estor Integral Development Association – AEDPI – and Radio  Xyaab Tzultaq’a received threats from workers who were fired by the mining company CGN Pronico.  These workers were removed from their duties because the company wasn’t able to transfer raw materials to continue its operations, due to blockades by other previously fired workers, who were asking for better working conditions.  So far, these former workers demand to be paid a part of their salary, since they haven’t received any compensation from the moment they were fired.

Outside the AEDPI facilities, a group of former workers of the mine gathered threatening to burn the place, calling out the names of radio announcers and organization workers, blaming them for the dismissals made by CGN.  In a CGN statement, it was alleged as one of the causes of the new contract suspensions the “conflictivity of the town”, without directly responding to its responsibility to the suspended workers.

AEPDI has accompanied in a legal accusation against CGN, who could stop its operations for not having had the support of a community consultation as established in ILO Convention 169, ratified by Guatemala.  AEPDI has had the support of the community radio Xyaab’ Tzuultaq’a, and both of them have supported the population in their complaints about Lake Izabal pollution and human rights violation by the mining company towards the population, as occurred in 2017, when the Estor Fishermen’s Association protested to demand their rights, leaving as balance a dead fisherman, some prisoners or linked to processes and a shadow of fear throughout the town.

We share the statement from  Estor Integral Development Association AEPDI and radio Xyaab’ Tzultaq’a and we support their work as human rights defenders and community communicators.