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Letter text:

The undersigned are a diverse network of human rights, environmental, indigenous, labor and faith-based organizations. Several of us are based in or have partners in Latin America, including in Peru. With this statement we express our concern about reports we have received regarding the violent displacement of the “Guardians of the Lakes” in Cajamarca on March 18, 2014.

Attached is the urgent appeal that the Celendín and Bambamarca Rondas have submitted to the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights regarding these violent acts and the ongoing situation of persecution and vulnerability for environmental and human rights defenders.

We add our voice to this call for protection and justice for the peasants in Cajamarca who are peacefully demonstrating their opposition to the Conga mining expansion—in exercise and defense of their internationally protected human rights.

With our partners in Cajamarca, we have been following the conflict related to the proposed Conga mining expansion since the declaration of Emergency law and the July 2012 violence against protesters and civil society leaders who accompanied them. We are deeply troubled by the reports that this site of peaceful human-rights defense, and the people that made it such a place, have been again subjected to alleged violence by state and private forces.

We respectfully urge the Peruvian government to take these immediate steps:

  • investigate and hold accountable those responsible for the eviction events against human rights defenders on March 18th;
  • promote peaceful, democratic solutions to social conflicts, including dialogue with communities;
  • guarantee an end to persecution and harassment of environmental and human rights defenders, including by reforming laws that criminalize peaceful protest;
  • ensure that companies acting in Peru do not infringe on the human rights— economic, cultural, social, civil, and political—of affected communities;
  • make public all agreements between mining companies and the Peruvian National Police and begin the process of their revocation; and
  • create a Truth Commission to review human rights violations linked to the exploitation of natural resources, as has been called for in the National Congress.

We also urge Newmont Mining Co., which is heading up the Conga mine project, to make a public declaration against the harassment and intimidation of mining protestors. We call on the company to not proceed with any aspect of the project without obtaining the free, prior and informed consent of all affected communities, and to ensure that no forced evictions take place.

As a broad network of international civil society organizations, we will closely monitor this situation in Peru and continue to notify North American and international authorities, decision-makers and the news media.


  1. Amazon Watch (USA)
  2. Asociacion DOCUPERU (Peru)
  3. Asociacion Putumayo Belgica (Belgium)
  4. Bianca Jagger Human Rights Foundation (UK)
  5. Biovision Foundation (Switzerland)
  6. Brazilian Commission on Justice and Peace (Brazil)
  7. Canada Save Rosia (Canada)
  8. Canadians at Heart Building Foundations (Canada)
  9. Center for Alternative Mining Development Policy (USA)
  10. Center for International Environmental Law (USA)
  11. Clean Water Alliance (USA)
  12. Collectif ALDEAH (France)
  13. Columban Center for Advocacy and Outreach (USA)
  14. Comité Académico Técnico de Asesoramiento a Problemas Ambientales (CATAPA)
  15. (Belgium)
  16. Comité de Solidarité avec Cajamarca (France)
  17. Commission Justice et Paix (Belgium)
  18. Conference of Major Superiors of Men (USA)
  19. Council of Canadians (Canada)
  20. Dakota Rural Action (USA)
  21. Denver Justice & Peace Committee (USA)
  22. Dominican Sisters of Springfield Justice Office (USA)
  23. EarthRights International (USA)
  24. Earthworks (USA)
  25. Ecosistemas (Chile)
  26. Environmental Rights Action (Friends of the Earth) (Nigeria)
  27. Ethical Metalsmiths (USA)
  28. Franciscan Action Network (USA)
  29. Free the Slaves (USA)
  30. Friends of the Earth (Malaysia)
  31. Friends of the Earth (UK)
  32. Friends of the Stikine Society (USA)
  33. Global Green USA (USA)
  34. Global Women’s Strike (USA)
  35. Grameen Shakti (Bangladesh)
  36. Green Cross International (USA)
  37. Inclusive Development International (USA)
  38. Indigenous Peoples Links (UK)
  39. IndustriALL Global Union (Switzerland)
  40. Information Network for Responsible Mining (INFORM) (USA)
  41. Institute for Ecology and Action Anthropology (INFOE) (Switzerland)
  42. Institute for Policy Studies, Global Economy Project (USA)
  43. International Society for Ecology and Culture (UK)
  44. International Women's Rights Action Watch – Asia Pacific (Malaysia)
  45. JATAM (Indonesia)
  46. Latin American Solidarity Centre (Ireland)
  47. Loyola University New Orleans Human Rights Advocacy Project (USA)
  48. Maryknoll Office for Global Concern (USA)
  49. Michael Succow Foundation for the Protection of Nature (Germany)
  50. Milieudefensie/Friends of the Earth (Netherlands)
  51. Mining Injustice Solidarity Network (Canada)
  52. MiningWatch Canada (Canada)
  53. Mining Zone Peoples' Solidarity Group (USA)
  54. Movement for the Survival of the Ogoni People(Nigeria)
  55. Movimiento Micaela Bastidas (UK)
  56. National Fisheries Solidarity Movement (Sri Lanka)
  57. Natural Capitalism Solutions (USA)
  58. Observatorio de Conflictos Mineros de America Latina (OCMAL) (Latin America) 58. Okanogan Highlands Alliance (USA)
  59. Physicians for Human Rights (Israel)
  60. Plains Justice (USA)
  61. Plataforma Interinstitcional Celendina (PIC) (Peru)
  62. Polaris Institute (Canada)
  63. Powershift e.V. (Germany)
  64. Progressive Leadership Alliance of Nevada (USA)
  65. ProtestBarrick (Canada)
  66. PUCHKA (Canada)
  67. Red Mexicana de Acción frente al Libre Comercio (Mexico)
  68. Sierra Club (USA)
  69. Sisters of Mercy of the Americas (USA)
  70. Small Planet Institute (USA)
  71. Social Accountability International (USA)
  72. Society for Threatened Peoples (Switzerland)
  73. Solidarity Center (USA)
  74. South Dakota Peace and Justice Center (USA)
  75. Swiss Working Group on Colombia (Switzerland)
  76. Reforest the Earth (UK)
  77. Third World Network (Malaysia)
  78. Transcend International (Portugal, Germany)
  79. Water More Precious Than Gold (USA)
  80. UNBC Guatemala Research Group (Canada)
  81. United Steelworkers (USA, Canada)
  82. U.S.-El Salvador Sister Cities (USA, El Salvador)

And the following Right Livelihood Award laureates:

  1. Ibrahim Abouleish (Egypt)
  2. Martin Almada (Paraguay)
  3. Dipal Barua (Bangladesh)
  4. Nnimmo Bassey (Nigeria)
  5. Maude Barlow (Canada)
  6. András Bíró (Hungary)
  7. Carmel Budiardjo (UK)
  8. Tony Clarke (Canada)
  9. Erik Dammann (Norway)
  10. Anwar Fazal (Malaysia)
  11. Johan Galtung (Norway)
  12. Hans Herren (Switzerland)
  13. Mohamed Idris (Malaysia)
  14. Bianca Jagger (UK/Nicaragua)
  15. Erwin Kräutler (Brazil)
  16. Ida Kuklina (Russia)
  17. Birsel Lemke (Turkey)
  18. Hunter Lovins (USA)
  19. Helen Mack (Guatemala)
  20. Dr. Manfred Max-Neef (Chile)
  21. Dr. Ruchama Marton (Israel)
  22. Huang Ming (China)
  23. Ruth Montrichard (Trinidad & Tobago)
  24. Raúl Montenegro (Argentina)
  25. Francis Moore Lappé (USA)
  26. Jacqueline Moudeina (Chad)
  27. Denis Mukwege (Democratic Republic of Congo)
  28. René Ngongo (Democratic Republic of Congo)
  29. Helena Norberge Hodge (UK)
  30. Juan Pablo Orrego (Chile)
  31. Sima Samar (Afghanistan)
  32. Dr. H. Sudarshan (India)
  33. David Suzuki (Canada)
  34. Alice Tepper Marlin (USA)
  35. Vesna Teršelič (Croatia)
  36. Shrikrishna Upadhyay (Nepal)
  37.  János Vargha (Hungary)
  38. Paul Walker (USA)
  39. Alyn Ware (New Zealand)
  40. Chico Whitaker (Brazil)
  41. Alla Yaroshinskaya (Ukraine)

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