Press Release: Selective legality in Skouries, Halkidiki, Greece
On Wednesday, 02/19/2014 , another protest against gold mining (Hellas Gold S.A & Eldorado Gold Cortp.) took place in Halkidiki.
The protesters complained to the police that the construction of forest roads is done using hazardous mine materials (samples analyzes have shown large concentrations of arsenic and other heavy metals). The protesters also complained about the intention of Hellas Gold SA to install illegal container at the mine construction in Skouries.
Under the government’s doctrine of “law and order “, the law and order were restored by abusing protesters, vulgar – of sexual content – swearing towards women, injuring and arresting of three people on charges of disobedience and illegal violence. It’s well known that illegal violence in Halkidiki is always exercised by the protesters and ever by the Greek Police.
The Police, in a statement, said that police forces did not attack demonstrators but they removed them from the site with their physical presence alone, whatever that means. No reference to the complaints of the residents was made.
The representative of the Hellas Gold S.A., referring to allegations of using hazardous materials in the coating of forest roads, said that “The material we lay in the roads is from mines in the area. Regarding sampling, anyone can take samples”. In free translation, the company will use whatever material is cheap and available and the residents can gather samples for their collection. He also said, commenting on the lack of the necessary permissions for the containers’ installation, that “This game with the licenses for the containers has gone too far. We do not construct the mine with licenses from the City Planning Authorities, we construct it with licenses issued by the appropriate authorities ” In free translation, competent authorities are those that facilitate the work of the company. Those authorities that are trying to implement the law, are unauthorized.
When injustice becomes law, resistance becomes duty