Poster in Colombia: “I say yes to life, no to mining"
A poster in Támesis, Colombia that reads: “I say yes to life, no to mining.” Photo: MiningWatch

This site is an educational tool and resource centre that makes connections between Canadian mining interests and the growing trend of criminalization against dissent and social protest involving land and environment defenders across the Americas.

The materials presented here have been developed based on the report “In the National Interest? Criminalization of Land and Environment Defenders in the Americas,” published by MiningWatch Canada and the International Civil Liberties Monitoring Group (ICLMG) in Fall 2015.

With this site, we hope to create a platform to foster further discussion about the systemic problems of extractivism and colonialism and their connection to Canada, to profile new and ongoing cases of criminalization, and to amplify calls for action coming from our organizations and others who are working in solidarity with affected communities and on related issues.

“By and large, what we are seeing is part of a concerted attack, oriented to avoid and limit debate on serious economic, social and environmental policy questions, and to stop any meaningful challenge to established power and practices. It may be deliberately planned or opportunistic, but it is neither capricious nor accidental. Rather, it is taking place during a period in which demands for respect and recognition of individual and collective human rights, democratic participation, and especially Indigenous rights have expanded…Such struggles have collided with economic interested – long-established post-colonial ones as well as new and rapidly growing globalized neoliberal capital interests, including in the are of large-scale mining…”

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