227 International groups denounce US mining company’s multi-million dollar claim against Guatemala

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The undersigned organizations stand in solidarity with Guatemalan communities in peaceful resistance to Kappes, Cassiday & Associates’ (KCA) Progreso VII Derivada gold project as the company brings a US$300 million arbitration claim against Guatemala to the World Bank´s International Centre for Settlement of Investment Disputes (ICSID) over alleged violations of the Dominican Republic-Central America Free Trade Agreement (CAFTA-DR).

  • We join in solidarity with the residents of San Pedro Ayampuc and San José del Golfo who are deeply concerned about the grave threat the mine poses to water supplies, ecosystems and the quality of life in the area.
  • We express our dismay at how this suit represents a further attack on Guatemala’s judicial system. The Constitutional Court is already under pressure as a result of President Morales’ decision to defy the Court’s ruling and expel the UN-backed anti-corruption and anti-impunity body, the International Commission Against Impunity in Guatemala (CICIG by its initials in Spanish).
  • We call on KCA and the Guatemalan government to refrain from intimidating the Constitutional Court justices and that the cases currently before them be allowed to play out and that decisions be made based on the rule of law. As part of this, we call on KCA to drop its suit.
  • We call for the immediate demilitarization of the region, specifically the municipality of San José de Golfo where the military has been deployed since January 2018, roughly one month after KCA filed its case.
  • We also support the call from the Peaceful Resistance of ‘La Puya’ that CAFTA-DR be declared detrimental to the wellbeing of the Guatemalan people and denounced as allowed by the Guatemalan Political Constitution, further considering that Guatemala has already had to pay $32.4 million dollars to two US companies (RDV and TECO) and is currently subject to other arbitration claims for hundreds of millions of dollars.

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