Solidarity Update: December 2018

News recap: Organizations demand justice in wake of assassinations and ongoing violence in Ixquisis, TAKE ACTION to stand with communities working to protect community consultations, NISGUA Speaking Tour shares lessons from successful organizing in Chixoy-Copón Rivers Watershed, KCA sues Guatemalan State in international court, survivors of sexual violence in Military Zone [...]

Four lessons on human rights that we’ve learned from defenders of life

On International Human Rights Day, we recognize that the language of human rights has not always served to advance social justice. In many cases, it has functioned as a smoke screen for imperial institutions to validate or obscure their violence. The U.S. government used the rhetoric of human rights [...]

Xinka Parliament denounces illegalities as court-ordered consultation process begins

The following article was co-written by the Maritimes-Guatemala Breaking the Silence Network, Earthworks, and NISGUA. On November 19, 2018, the Xinka Parliament held a press conference to denounce the malicious behaviour of the Ministry of Energy and Mines (MEM), the Ministry of the Environment and Natural Resources (MARN), and [...]

2019-12-25T00:48:22+00:00November 20th, 2018|Defense of life and territory|

La Resistencia a las Represas Hidroeléctricas en Guatemala: Una Cuestión de Vida y Muerte

Foto: Nómada El siguiente artículo fue escrito por Zia Kandler y publicado en inglés en la revista electrónica, Upside Down World. Fue traducida a español por la autora y publicado aquí con permiso de la autora y Upside Down World. Zia Kandler era testigo presencial de este conflicto durante 10 [...]

Commemorating 10 years of community consultations in defense of land and life

For generations, indigenous communities in Guatemala have held consultations to make decisions on issues affecting their people and their lands. While the signing of the Peace Accords in 1996 facilitated the adoption of national laws and international agreements that recognized the particular rights of indigenous peoples, the post-conflict neoliberal [...]

2019-12-27T17:15:34+00:00June 19th, 2015|Defense of life and territory|

“We are a peaceful people” – Mataquescuintla celebrates 2nd anniversary of municipal referendum against mining

"Second Anniversary, Municipal Consultation as requested by Residents." Photo: CPR Urbana “Authorities will come and go, but it’s the responsibility of the people to uphold this decision,” says Moisés Divas to a large crowd gathered in the central park in the municipality of Mataquescuintla, Jalapa, located less than six [...]

2019-12-27T17:19:36+00:00November 19th, 2014|Defense of life and territory, Escobal|

NISGUA Fall Tour 2014

FULL ITINERARY: SEATTLE, WA.; OCTOBER 2-6 Area Contact Phil Neff: OCTOBER 2 Seattle University, 1:30-2:30pm 901 12th Avenue Bannan Building, Room 102 Seattle, WA 98122 Traditions Fair Trade Café; 7-8:30pm $5-15 Sliding Donation 300 5th Avenue SW Olympia, WA 98501 OCTOBER 3 Duwamish Longhouse & Cultural Center, 5:00pm [...]

2018-01-11T20:14:15+00:00September 18th, 2014|Tour, Xalalá Dam|

Court rules that Guatemala must recognize results of community consultations

In an historic resolution, a Guatemalan Appeals Court ruled last week that the government must take into account the right to free, prior and informed consent when granting mining licenses on the lands of indigenous communities. The ruling came in response to a legal action presented by the Sipakapense [...]

Se solicita a Comisión de Valores en Canadá investigar a Minera Tahoe luego de que escuchas telefónicas vincluan a sus empleados en hecho violentos en Guatemala

PARA DIFUSIÓN INMEDIATA 3 de junio 2013 (Toronto/Ottawa) El Proyecto Justicia y Responsabilidad Corporativa (Justice and Corporate Accountability Project - JCAP) en Canadá entregó el día viernes una queja a la Comisión de Valores de la provincia de Ontario en relación a la empresa Tahoe Resources (TSX: THO; NYSE: [...]

2019-12-27T17:36:28+00:00June 3rd, 2013|defensa del territorio, Escobal (ESP)|

International community calls for Rubén Herrera’s immediate release

More than one year after President Molina declared a state of siege in Santa Cruz de Barillas, repression continues against community leaders resisting the Cambalam hydroelectric project, operated by Spanish owned Hidro Santa Cruz. Violence and criminalization against leaders defending territory and the right to self determination has been [...]

2019-12-27T18:21:39+00:00May 23rd, 2013|Defense of life and territory, Huehuetenango|

Tahoe Resources Investor Alert calls Guatemala project a Dangerous Investment

(Ottawa/Guatemala City) – Yesterday, the Network in Solidarity with the People of Guatemala (NISGUA) and MiningWatch Canada warned Tahoe Resources investors against further investment in the Escobal silver project, given lack of community support and increasing violence and repression in the area. Risks identified include: Tahoe Resources does not have the social license to [...]

2018-01-16T15:21:24+00:00May 9th, 2013|Escobal|

Guatemalan government declares state of siege in municipalities surrounding Tahoe Escobal mine

During the early hours of Thursday, May 2, one day after the first anniversary of the state of siege in Santa Cruz de Barillas, Huehuetenango, the Guatemalan government declared another state of siege in four municipalities surrounding Tahoe Resources’ Escobal mine. The imposition of martial law comes less than one [...]

2018-01-16T15:22:46+00:00May 3rd, 2013|defensa del territorio, Escobal|

We are all Barillas – Statement of the Western Peoples’ Council

Unofficial translation by NISGUAComunicado original en español¡In Defense of Life, Territory, Mother Earth and the collective Rights of our Peoples!  “WE ARE ALL BARILLAS” No to the submission of the Guatemalan state to multinational companies.  Yes to life.To: Our indigenous brothers and sisters around the worldAnd the national and international [...]

2020-01-01T21:27:01+00:00May 11th, 2012|Defense of life and territory, Huehuetenango|


*URGENT COMMUNIQUE*To the national and international public, regarding the recent events in the municipality of Santa Cruz Barillas Huehuetenango, WE DECLARE:Yesterday, at around one o'clock in the afternoon, armed men ambushed three community leaders as they returned from the municipal center to their nearby community of Posa Verde, where the [...]


*COMUNICADO URGENTE*Ante la opinión pública nacional e internacional, ante los últimos acontecimientos sucedidos en el municipio de Santa Cruz Barillas Huehuetenango MANIFESTAMOS:El día de ayer a eso de la una de la tarde;  hombres armados emboscaron a tres personas, líderes comunitarios;  que retornaban de la cabecera municipal hacia su comunidad [...]

2020-01-01T21:08:45+00:00May 2nd, 2012|defensa del territorio, Huehuetenango - ESP|

Corte de Constitucionalidad otorga amparo, suspende reglamento de consultas comunitarias

El 23 de marzo del 2011, representantes de varios municipios que han celebrado consultas comunitarias, articulados en el Consejo de Pueblos de Occidente (CPO), interpusieron un amparo exijiendo que el gobierno desistiera en su intento por reglamentar las consultas.  Graham HuntEl 25 de abril del 2011, la Corte de Constitucionalidad [...]

2020-01-01T21:07:35+00:00June 3rd, 2011|defensa del territorio|

Constitutional Court grants injunction, provisionally halts regulation of community referenda

On March 23, 2011, representatives of municipalities that have carried out referenda, articulated in the Consejo de Pueblos de Occidente (CPO), filed an injunction demanding that the government desist in its efforts to regulate community referenda.  Graham HuntOn April 25, 2011, Guatemala's Constitutional Court resolved to grant a provisional injunction [...]

2020-01-01T21:07:45+00:00June 3rd, 2011|Defense of life and territory|

Maya Mam People Declare Mining-Free Territory

Graham HuntOn May 18, 2011, in a massively attended ceremony carried out among the temples of Zaculeu, the Maya Mam People of Huehuetenango declared their territory mining-free.  In the presence of community, municipal and ancestral authorities from Mam territory, as well as delegations from other departments, community leaders presented the [...]

2020-01-01T21:07:57+00:00May 27th, 2011|Defense of life and territory, Huehuetenango|

Pueblo Mam de Huehuetenango se declara Libre de Minería

Graham HuntEl 18 de mayo del 2011, en un acto multitudinario celebrado entre los templos de Zaculeu, el pueblo Maya Mam de Huehuetenango se declaró libre de minería.  En presencia de autoridades comunitarias, municipales y ancestrales del mismo área Mam, así como delegaciones provenientes de otros departamentos, se dio lectura [...]

2020-01-01T21:08:09+00:00May 27th, 2011|defensa del territorio, Huehuetenango - ESP|

On fourth anniversary of community referendum of Ixcán, communities and organizations denounce environmental degradation

Two men (background, right) fish at the confluence of the Copón (foreground) and Chixoy (back) rivers, in the municipality of Ixcán, El Quiché.  Community members denounce that the Copón river has become contaminated as a result of the Palo Viejo I hydroelectric dam, upriver on the Finca San Francisco plantation [...]

2020-01-01T21:08:37+00:00May 23rd, 2011|Defense of life and territory, Xalalá Dam|

A cuatro años de la consulta comunitaria de Ixcán, comunidades y organizaciones denuncian deterioro ambiental

Dos hombres (trasfondo, mano derecha) pescan en la confluencia de los ríos Copón (primer plano, color café) y Chixoy (fondo, color azul), en el municipio de Ixcán, Quiché.  Vecinos denuncian que desde hace un año las aguas del río Copón les llegan contaminadas y alegan que el deterioro del río [...]

2020-01-01T21:10:10+00:00May 23rd, 2011|defensa del territorio, Represa Xalalá|

Thousands protest against proposed regulation of community consultations

Graham HuntOn April 29, 2011, more than 3,000 people, primarily representatives of indigenous organizations from rural areas of Guatemala, marched through the streets of the capital city to manifest once more their disapproval of current government's attempt to regulate community referenda via a proposed law presented earlier the same year.  [...]

2020-01-01T21:10:38+00:00May 6th, 2011|Defense of life and territory|

Se intensifica rechazo de reglamento de las consultas comunitarias – Rejection of regulation of community referenda intensifies

Graham HuntOn March 23, hundreds of representatives from more than 50 municipalities that have carried out community referenda in Guatemala, articulated in the Consejo de Pueblos de Occidente (CPO) and other regional groups, took to the streets in Guatemala City to repudiate the central government's initiative to regulate community consultations, [...]

Se celebra consulta comunitaria en San Martín Chile Verde – San Martín Chile Verde celebrates community referendum

A man prepares to vote in Caserío Tui Bul. Graham HuntUn hombre se prepara para emitir su voto en el Caserío Tui Bul.On March 16, 2011, 17,849 residents of the predominantly Maya Mam municipality of San Martín "Chile Verde" Sacatepéquez, Quetzaltenango, added their voices to those of the roughly 600,000 [...]

Olintepeque celebrates preventive community referendum – Olintepeque celebra consulta comunitaria preventiva

A view of the Xequijel river, in Olintepeque, Quetzaltenango. Graham HuntUna Vista del Río Xequijel, en Olintepeque, Quetzaltenango.On February 20, 1524, Tecún Umán, last king of the K'iché nation, was killed in battle against the Spanish conquerors.  487 years later to the day, citizens of the municipality of Olintepeque, the [...]

Citizens of San Juan Ostuncalco reject mining – Ciudadanos de San Jan Ostuncalco rechazan minería

San Juan Ostuncalco's central plaza on the morning of the referendum.  Graham HuntLa plaza central de San Juan Ostuncalco en la mañana de la consulta.On February 18, 2011, in the 49th good faith community referendum celebrated in Guatemala, 33,428 men, women, and children rejected all mining exploration and exploitation in [...]

Communities present results of referenda – Comunidades presentan resultados de consultas

Representatives of the municipality of Cabricán prepare banners for the march to the Congress. Graham HuntRepresentantes del municipio de Cabricán arman pancartas para la marcha al Congreso. On Monday, November 29, representatives of the municipalities of Cabricán, Santa Cruz del Quiché, and Uspantán submitted to the Congress, the Ministry of [...]

Cabricán: Quetzaltenango’s First Referendum / Primera consulta en Quetzaltenango

"The K'iche People's Council...Our land is our home.Good Faith Community Referendum in Santa Cruz del Quiche.""Consejo de Pueblos K'iche's... nuestra tierra es nuestra casa!Consulta Comunitaria de Buena Fe para Santa Cruz del Quiché"Delmi ArriazaThree consultas (community referendums) were organized in the Western Highlands of Guatemala in October 2010.  Since 2005, approximately 650,000 [...]

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