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Guatemala: Don't Undermine our Rights


    GUATEMALA: STOP TARGETTING LAND DEFENDERS! Tell Guatemala's Attorney General that land defenders deserve protection, not prison, for their efforts to protect water and crops. 



    1. Background: Mining and Indigenous Rights in Guatemala For more information about human rights defenders opposed to mining developments in Guatemala, read our backgrounder.
    2. Amnesty Report: Mining in Guatemala: Rights at RiskNew report details scale of mining conflict in Guatemala and makes recommendations for change. 
    3. Amnesty Report: We Defend the Land with Our Blood: Territory, Land and Environmental Rights Defenders Under Attack in Guatemala and Honduras (2016)
    4. Amnesty intervenes in Tahoe case: Read our factum and other legal documents filed in BC Supreme Court and the BC Court of Appeal. For further reading, our coalition partner, CAMIGUA, has posted a slide-show timeline of events at Tahoe Resource's Escobal mine in south-east Guatemala. 
    5. Canadian Extractives In Central America Slideshow Amnesty International Canada proudly presents Canadian Extractives as Development: Myth or Reality?, a new photo exhibit by award-winning documentary photographer James Rodriguez.
    6. Films we love: Gold Fever and Heart of Sky, Heart of Earth. Learn how you can screen these gorgeous documentaries in your community.


    1. VIDEO: Interview with Yolanda Oqueli - Guatemala Yolanda talks about the value of international solidarity for human rights defenders such as herself. 
      Written and Directed by Timo Schmidt.
      This short film explores the relationship between indigenous rights and mining operations around the world.
      VIDEO: A message of solidarity from AI Canada members to Yolanda Oqueli and members of the Northern Metropolitan Front (FRENAM). 
    2. NEW DOCUMENTARY: One Year One World presents a new 11 minute documentary on the Tahoe Resources silver mine in Santa Rosa, Guatemala. 


    Tara Scurr
    Business and Human Rights Campaign
    604-294-5160 x102

    Elizabeth Berton-Hunter
    Media Relations
    416-363-9933 x332


    Help us to make visible the necessary and important work of brave territory, land and environmental rights defenders in Guatemala.  They have been criminalized, attacked, or have lost their lives for their work to protect lands and waters from risky mining, hydro-electric, or industrial agriculture projects.  They are some of the most at-risk people in the world. 




    Send a message that Canada supports CICIG!

    President Jimmy Morales is trying to end the fight against impunity in Guatemala by revoking the mandate of the UN Commission Against Impunity in Guatemala (CICIG). 

    >>>Write a letter to Canada's new Ambassador to Guatemala urging her to publicly support CICIG's mandate.


    A young woman defender working with CODECA has been killed. <<Please take action!>> 

    Please note that the email address to the Minister of the Interior in the Urgent Action is no longer valid. The correct email is: 

    A horrific upsurge in violence against territory, land and human rights defenders claimed 21 lives between January and September.

    Several defenders who were killed were targetted for their work with the Committee for Campesino Development (CODECA) and the Campesino Committee of the Highlands (CCDA). Both organizations carry out vital work with Indigenous peoples in farming communities.

    Please write to Guatemalan authorities now to demand justice and an end to attacks on human rights defenders. 

    TAKE ACTION! >>>

    Killed for Standing Up For the Environment

    Ronal David Barillas Díaz was a tireless Xinka activist whose work to defend the environment may have cost him his life. On January 9th, he was gunned down at the stall where he sold newspapers and food. His assailants fled the scene. 

    His killing leaves his community and the organizations in which he worked in a state of greater uncertainty, fear and danger. 



    BLOG POST: "Crisis in Guatemala: Why Hope Must Guide Us." Reflections from Business and Human Rights Campaigner, Tara Scurr.

    GUEST BLOG: "My Mother Taught Me How to Fight", Young Guatemalan human rights defenders tell their story. 


    PRESS RELEASE: Guatemala stokes conflict around mining by failing to consult communities. Sept 19, 2014

    AMNESTY REPORT: Read Amnesty's new report called Mining in Guatemala: Rights at Risk.

    Canada's Governor General, David Johnston, warns Canadian mining companies not to tarnish Canada's 'brand' abroad. 27 November, 2014.



    Unified calls for justice:

    READ A LETTER signed by 25 Canadian civil society organisations to the Guatemalan Ambassador to Canada about stopping the attacks on human rights defenders. 

    Read a letter to Guatemala's Attorney General, that was signed by 62 organisations, about the killing of Ángel Estuardo Quevedo. Estuardo, as he was known, was a courageous human rights defender who was part of the Peaceful Resistance Movement of Casillas, Jalapa and Jutiapa, which was resisting Tahoe Resource's Escobal silver mine. 

    <<Read the letter in English and Spanish>>

    GOOD NEWS: January, 2017: Seven Guatemalan men who were shot by Tahoe Resources private security guards in 2013 scored a major victory in BC's Court of Appeal. Learn more by reading our press release and blog. 

    Read our press release in Spanish.

    Background: BC-Registered Tahoe Resources (TAHO) was named in a lawsuit filed in the Supreme Court of British Columbia. The civil suit alleges that Tahoe Resources is responsible for the shooting of seven men during a protest by mine security personnel in April, 2013.

    NEW REPORT: September 2016: Shocking new report, Defending the Land with Our Blood: Territory, Land and Environmental Rights Defenders Under Attack in Guatemala and Honduras,  exposes dangers faced by human rights defenders. Some of the projects they oppose are owned by Canadian companies!  See our Take Action section for more





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