Proceso reports on the mining concessions with Canadian capital near the Rarámuri community of Coloradas de la Virgen

Published by Brent Patterson on

ASMAC director Isela Gonzalez holds a poster of Rarámuri land defender Julian Carrillo. Join her on Thursday March 11 at 3:30 pm EST for this webinar that will focus on the Indigenous defence of territory against extractivism.

On March 6, Proceso reported on the conviction of the material killers of Rarámuri leader Julián Carrillo Martínez and his son Victor Carrillo Carrillo. It highlights: “There is still a need to know and prosecute the intellectual authors.”

The article further highlights the four mining concessions that were granted on the territory defended by Julian, at least two of which involved Canadian capital.

This civil society statement has also noted: “Three [were] to individuals and the fourth to the mining company Evrim SA de CV, which belongs to the Canadian group [Vancouver-based] Evrim Resources Corp. [now called Orogen Royalties Inc.].”

Amnesty International has stated that a week before he was killed, Julian spoke against a mining concession granted to a Canadian company.

Displacement from Coloradas de la Virgen

The community of Coloradas de la Virgen is located in the municipality of Guadalupe and Calvo in the Sierra Tarahumara region of the state of Chihuahua.

The Sierra Madre Alliance (ASMAC) and the Centre for Women’s Human Rights (CEDEHM) have called for reparations for the people of this community who have been dispossessed of their land through violence.

The Proceso article notes that most families in Coloradas de la Virgen have been displaced. During the trial it was noted that there are currently only two or three families left, where 700 people had lived before.

This displacement has also come because of the constant threats and killings of Indigenous leaders of the region who defend territory against extractivism.

Logging and mining concessions

In 2007, the Secretariat of the Environment and Natural Resources (SEMARNAT) granted permission for logging in Coloradas de la Virgen. Indigenous defenders were able to successfully challenge this licence. In 2015, the Agricultural Court suspended logging permits. Julian Carrillo’s house was set on fire following that decision.

Proceso also reports: “Over the last eight years the Directorate of Mines granted four mining concessions near the communities of Coloradas de la Virgen and Choréachi, on the boundaries of Morelos and Guadalupe and Calvo.”

According to the news report, those are:

– Title 236200, Mesa del Cobre, granted on May 24, 2010 to Humberto Ayub Touché along with Arcadio Fontes Martínez and Artemio Fontes.

– Title 244491, Polo (in Morelos adjoining Coloradas de la Virgen), granted on October 5, 2015 to Lamberto Flores and Filemón Portillo Chávez (which has Canadian capital).

– Title 243086, San Miguel (in Morelos), granted on July 31, 2017 to Lamberto Flores Salazar and Filemón Portillo Chávez (also with Canadian capital).

– Title 246243, Las Estrellas, granted on April 5, 2018.

Proceso reports: “With the accompaniment of Alianza Sierra Madre, the Rarámuri community reported days before Julian’s murder that the court unanimously ruled the review appeal 357/2007-5, which overturned the first-degree ruling issued by the District 5 Agricultural Unitary Court in the city of Chihuahua.”

Webinar with ASMAC on March 11

To learn more, please join ASMAC director Isela Gonzalez on Thursday March 11 at 3:30 pm EST for a webinar that will discuss this situation.

She will discuss the right to territory and natural assets, the right to free, prior and informed consent, the right to reparations for forced displacement, the urgent need to protect Indigenous land defenders who resist extractivism, and the role of Canadian capital.

To register for this webinar, please click here.

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