Colombia Solidarity Campaign

- Fighting for Peace with Justice -

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Campaign commentary on Colombia

CERREJON WORKERS ON STRIKE

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Workers at Carbones del Cerrejón Limited (*) voted on 7 March 2016 over 98% in favor of a general strike. The workers’ union Sintracarbón states "It has not been the intention of the union to strike, we were confident that the company would understand the just demands of the workers and give a particular procedure and appropriate solution".

The workers’ problems are serious. Their most difficult issue is health. 900 of the mine’s 13,000 workers suffer from illnesses caused by mining activity. They have diseases such as cancer and silicosis, presented mostly by people under 40 years. Neither the company nor the Guajira department can treat due to lack of specialized health centers. The corporation denies the existence of such health problems.

Another issue is increasing workload this year without corresponding wage increase.

Cerrejon’s bosses have sought to deny workers participation in trade union activities, directly affecting the stability of Sintracarbón. This goes against Article 39 of the Constitution of Colombia which enshrines freedom of association workers in unions without state intervention.

The environmental problem facing the population in La Guajira is another union demand. Most rivers in the department are dry because of mining . The workers have called for measures to protect the environment and restore water sources.

Source: Colombia Informa

 

Campesino strike in Colombia

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by Anonymous Eyewitness

The length and breadth of Colombia has seen over the past two and a half weeks multiple protests by Colombian peasant farmers (campesinos) with widespread popular support in the towns and cities of a country whose population is easily 50% rural and whose roots is almost entirely campesino.

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The Colombian Government sows terror: the cases of Cajamarca and Castilla (Tolima)

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José Antonio Gutiérrez D.

As examples of the unprecedented criminal violence with which the social protest has been repressed here are the cases of two localities in the department of Tolima: the municipality of Cajamarca and the community of Castilla in the municipality of Coyaima. It must be stressed that these are not exceptional cases, rather two more cases of the officially-endorsed violence against the people that has assailed the whole country.

Image of one of those wounded by a bullet in Castilla, Coyaima, Tolima

Image of one of those wounded by a bullet in Castilla, municipality of Coyaima (Tolima)

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Lord Browne – BP’s Destroyer of Lives in Colombia Now Turns his Attention on Youth Here

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After 18 years production, the oil workers union is still not recognised by BP.

If implemented, Browne’s report will in one stroke both wipe out the chance of higher education for millions of young people and the prospects for critical studies in the humanities and social sciences, all in the name of ‘the economy’. Students rallying against tuition fee increases recommended by Lord Browne should know what we are dealing with. He was for nine years chief executive of oil multinational BP and as such he personifies the ugly face of British corporate capitalism. His father worked for Anglo-Persian Oil which changed its name to British Petroleum after backing the CIA inspired coup in Iran in 1953. The coup ousted Prime Minister Mossadegh who, following popular demand, had nationalised his country’s oil. With Mosaddegh killed, and the compliant dictator Shah of Iran installed, BP was once again the main beneficiary of Iran’s oil.

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?No Insignia? Land, Where Deceit is a Virtue

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Operation Checkmate in which the Colombia armed forces tricked the FARC into releasing Ingrid Betancourt and 14 other hostages on 2 July was immediately declared a great success. Bush congratulated his counterpart President Uribe, not least because three former US soldiers were amongst the released.
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London Mining Network

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The London Mining Network (LMN) is an alliance of human rights, development and environmental groups. We pledge to expose the role of companies, funders and government in the promotion of unacceptable mining projects.