PBI-Guatemala posts article about court challenge on redacted Canadian documents on the Goldcorp Marlin mine

Published by Brent Patterson on

Communities affected by the Marlin mine demonstrate at the Canadian embassy in Guatemala City. Photo by PAQG.

On April 8, PBI-Guatemala posted on their Facebook page an article about a court challenge in Canada over redacted government documents relating to a Canadian owned mine in Guatemala.

Red Eco reports: “On March 2, the Federal Court heard the case brought by Shin Imai, professor emeritus at Osgoode Hall Law School at York University, v. Canada. Shin Imai contends in his lawsuit that Canadian officials intervened on behalf of Goldcorp by pressuring decision-makers in Guatemala and the Inter-American Commission [IACHR].”

“The IACHR requested in May 2010 the precautionary suspension of the operation of Goldcorp’s Marlín mine, located in Guatemala’s San Marcos department.”

“The IACHR made the decision at the request of 18 local communities and after verifying that the Marlín mine caused damage to the health of the inhabitants, as well as their water sources and the environment.”

“Imai demands that documents be revealed showing that Peter Kent, then Canadian foreign minister, called to speak directly with Guatemala’s president [Álvaro Colom].”

‘In his not being able to do so, he spoke to the vice-president [Rafael Espada] a few hours before Guatemala made the final decision not to take the precautionary suspension measure of the mining project issued by the IACHR.”

“Emails from Canada’s then-ambassador to the OAS [Organization of American States], Allan Culham, addressed to senior Canadian officials at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, indicate that the representative of Ottawa met with Santiago Canton, then executive secretary of the IACHR, to discuss the Goldcorp case.”

“The documents explaining the content of that meeting between Culham [from Canada] and Canton [from the IACHR] are completely censored.”

“To get out of doubt, Shin Imai and Charis Kamphuis, a professor of law at Thompson Rivers University in Canada, demand that [Global Affairs Canada] disclose the full content of the hidden documents.”

The article concludes: “While the case may take months to resolve, it is ‘of great importance to Latin America’, Imai said because it affects fundamental institutions of the OAS, such as the IACHR.”

To read the full Red Eco article in Spanish, click on: Hasta la CIDH fue presionada por Canadá a favor de proyecto minero.

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