MAC: Mines and Communities

Citizens from the village of Stratoniki in northeastern Greece have contacted us asking for assistan

Published by MAC on 2002-04-27

Citizens from the village of Stratoniki in northeastern Greece have contacted us asking for assistance to stop the dangerous and destructive mining that is being conducted immediately under their town. Despite the opposition of the majority of local people and their officials, the Greek government has given permission to the Canadian company TVX, to continue mining. These activities have already caused the land surface to collapse in several places, cracking houses. Because the area is underlain by extremely active geologic faults, such mining has the potential for truly significant harm to property and human lives.

All formal opposition to the mining by the citizens and their local officials has met with no success so far. Thus, they recently conducted public demonstrations, which were violently quelled by an outside police force sent in by the central government. Numerous local citizens have been arrested and charged with serious offenses in a clear attempt to prevent further demonstrations and to allow mining to proceed.

Please support these citizens in their attempt to have their voices heard and to gain some local control over their environment and their lives. We ask that you send e-mails, faxes, and letters by May 10, 2002, to the Greek government officials and TVX officers listed below, requesting the following: Given the obvious dangers to the citizens of Stratoniki, we ask that TVX immediately stop mining under the village and not be allowed to continue any such mining operations without their formal consent. We also ask that the citizens’ struggle for the protection of their village not be penalized and all charges against them be dropped.

A sample letter containing additional details on the situation in Stratoniki and the names of officials to whom your correspondence should be addressed follows. Due to the time constraints, we suggest that emails or faxes would be the best way to communicate your wishes.

Thanks for your support for the people of Stratoniki.

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