MAC/20: Mines and Communities

Police denounce protestors against mining operations

Published by MAC on 2007-08-24

Police denounce protestors against mining operations

El Tiempo, Honduras

24th August 2007

SANTA BÁRBARA. The legal representative of the Preventative Police, Rosibel Estrada, filed criminal charges against two memebers of the Catholic church and fifty one other persons in this municipality. Among those accused of five crimes are Father Marco Aurelio Lorenzo, Parrish of the church of Macuelizo, Reinaldo Garcia, vicar of the dioceses of Occidente, and fifty-one campesinos who participated in the protest of May 17 against mining exploration and operations carried out by mining companies in Honduran territory.

On that date, police officers confronted with residents of Occidente as attempted to remove demonstrators who had blocked the highway, and many were injured by beatings and gunfire. Both sides accused the other of aggression.

The state lawyer filed the charges Tuesday afternoon for the crimes of threats, injuries, damages, attempted homicide and obstruction of free passage. The Parrish of the municipality, Miguel Pozuelo, said that the charges filed by the Preventative Police is designed as a sort of gag in the mouths of Catholics who were truly those affected and injured.

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