MAC/20: Mines and Communities

Latin American Update

Published by MAC on 2006-07-23


Latin American Update

23rd July 2006

CHILE/ARGENTINA: PASCUA LAMA

Chilean organizations Urge Minister of Foreign Relations to Anull Decree

Establishing the Specific Protocol for Pascua Lama

OLCA

20th July 2006

Organizations of the Huasco Valley Opposed to Pascua Lama Mining Project, with Help of OLCA, Urges the Minister of Foreign Relations to Anull Decree Establishing the Additional Specific Protocol for Pascua Lama

On Wednesday July 19 at 11:30 am, Mauricio Ríos, President of the Council for the Defense of the Huasco Valley, Luis Faura, Councilperson of Alto del Carmen and Lucio Cuenca, Director of Latin American Observatory of Environmental Conflicts (OLCA), delivered to the Minister of Foreign Relations of Chile, Alejandro Foxley, a card urging him to annull the decree legislated as the Additional Specific Protocol which created the legal framework and justification to make possible the development of the Pascua Lama project. This decree established the Area of Operations of the mining project, within the Mining Integration and Complementation Treaty with Argentina.

Mining company Minera Nevada Ltda, subsidiary of Barrick Gold Corporation, is waging a dispute over the ownership of mining concessions with Rodolfo Villar, and the courts hosting this battle ruled in 2001 with a preliminary ruling over the concessions. However, this ruling was never supposed to have been incorporated as part of the area of operations of Pascua Lama.

Furthermore, the recent ruling of the 14th Civil Court of Santiago, ordered the restitution of the ownership of the disputed mining claims to Mr. Villar. Upon this basis, it is founded that the Decree enacted by the Additional Specific Protocol is fundamentally flawed and therefore should be nullified by the authorities who drafted it.

Communications: OLCA - Latin American Observatory of Environmental Conflicts Providencia 365 Office 41 - Santiago de Chile

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