Wednesday, July 25, 2007

URGENT ACTION REQUIRED: Protect Ecuadorian Community Activists

I have just received this from Tara Scurr. Please distribute widely.
Please respond as soon as possible - the situation in Ecuador is becoming increasingly grave.
Many thanks.
Tara Scurr
Business and Human Rights Campaigner
Amnesty International Canada
Pacific Regional Office
(604) 294.5160
www.amnesty. ca/business

Ecuadorian community activists are facing death threats and attacks for being against copper mining operations.


AI Index: AMR 28/002/2007

UA 193/07

Fear for safety

25 July 2007


Jaime Polivio Pérez Lucero (m), community leader in García Moreno parish

Mercy Catalina Torres Terán (f)

Others opposed to the Intag copper mining project

According to reports, community leader Jaime Polivio Pérez Lucero has been threatened and activist Mercy Catalina Torres Terán has been attacked, as a result of their opposition to a mining project close to their homes in the Intag area of Imbabura province, northern Ecuador. Their lives, and those of others who voice opposition to the mine, are in danger.

Jaime Polivio Pérez Lucero, from Garcia Moreno parish in Imbabura, a group of villages close to a site where the authorities and a mining company are planning to excavate for copper, has received a series of death threats in recent months. In December 2006, while he was taking part in a protest against the mining project, Jaime Polivio Pérez Lucero was reportedly approached by an armed civilian. The armed man told Jaime Polivio Pérez: “Si te sigues oponiendo a la minera vamos a tener que matarte” (if you continue to oppose the mining company we will have to kill you). According to reports, the armed civilians and security guards used tear gas and shot at the demonstrators, injuring several people. Among those injured was Jaime Polivio Pérez’s brother, Israel Pérez, who was shot.

Following the incident, Jaime Polivio Pérez reportedly received several anonymous calls on his mobile phone, in which the caller said, “Si no abandonas la dirigencia te vamos a matar. Deja de subir a Barcelona porque de caso contrario tendrás tu merecido” (If you do not quit the leadership [of a community organization in García Moreno] we are going to kill you. Stop going to Barcelona [one of the communities of the García Moreno parish] or you will get what you deserve).

On 23 June 2007, according to reports, another member of the community received an anonymous email referring to a plan to kill Jaime Polivio Pérez.

On 9 July, activist Mercy Catalina Torres was outside her home in Garcia Moreno when she was reportedly beaten by a man wearing a balaclava. She was cut and bruised in the attack. Mercy Catalina Torres had allegedly been threatened in her home two months before the attack, when a man apparently shouted at her: “porque ya vino el carro, te salvaste perra” (“because someone just arrived in a car, you saved yourself, bitch”).

Jaime Polivio Pérez and Mercy Catalina Torres reported the incidents to the local Attorney’s Office. However, to date, Amnesty International is not aware of any investigation being opened into the threats or the attack, and no protection has been granted to them.

Both Jaime Polivio Pérez and Mercy Catalina Torres have been very active and outspoken in their campaigning against the planned copper mine. They believe that the communities which will be affected by the mining project have not been consulted in a meaningful, open and transparent way by the authorities. Members of these communities are concerned about the environmental impact it might have on the area, a nature reserve where most inhabitants depend on agriculture.


During a visit to Ecuador in November 2006, Amnesty International visited Imbabura and met with some members of the communities affected by the mining project in Intag. The delegation received testimonies and reports of acts of intimidation, harassment and attacks against those who campaign against the mining project. Amnesty International wrote to the authorities asking for investigations to be opened into these incidents. However, to date, the organization is not aware of any investigations into these events.

RECOMMENDED ACTION: Using your own words, please choose a few of the suggestions below to create a personal appeal and send it as quickly as possible:

- expressing concern for the safety of Jaime Polivio Pérez Lucero, Mercy Catalina Torres Terán, and other inhabitants of the Intag area, Imbabura, who are opposed to the copper mining project;

- expressing concern that Jaime Polivio Pérez Lucero has been repeatedly threatened with death since December 2006, and that Mercy Catalina Torres Terán was beaten in July 2007;

- stating that these acts of intimidation appear to be linked to their campaigning actions to defend the rights of the communities in Intag to a meaningful, open and transparent consultation prior to the development of any mining project in the area;

- urging the authorities to take steps to guarantee the safety of Jaime Polivio Pérez Lucero and Mercy Catalina Torres Terán, in accordance with their own wishes;

- urging the authorities to carry out an independent and impartial investigation into the death threat received by Jaime Polivio Pérez Lucero and the attack against Mercy Catalina Torres Terán, making the results public and bringing those responsible to justice;

- asking to be informed of the results of these investigation.


Minister of the Interior:

Dr. Gustavo Larrea

Ministro de Gobierno, Policía,

Justicia, Cultos y Municipalidades

Ministerio de Gobierno y Policía

Espejo y Benalcázar,

Quito- Ecuador

Fax: 011593 2295 5666 Ext. 155 or 011 593 2295 5666 Ext. 150 – 151 (ask for fax tone)

Salutation: Dear Minister/Señor Ministro

Attorney General:

Dr. Jorge Germán

Ministro Fiscal General del Estado

Fiscalía General del Estado

Av. Eloy Alfaro Nº 32-240 y República

Quito, Ecuador

Fax: 011 593 2255 8561 (may be difficult to reach)

Salutation: Dear Minister/Señor Ministro

Minister of Energy and Mines:

Econ. Alberto Acosta

Ministro de Energía y Minas

Ministerio de Energía y Minas

Juan León Mera Nº 26-220 y Orellana

Quito - Ecuador

Fax: 011 593 2290 6350

Salutation: Dear Attorney General/Sr. Ministro Fiscal


Human Rights Non-governmental Organization CEDHU:

Comisión Ecumenica de Derechos Humanos

Carlos Ibarra 176 y 10 de Agosto

Edif. Yuraj Pirca 9no. Piso,

Quito, Ecuador

Fax: 011 593 2258 9272

E-mail: denuncias@cedhu. org

His Excellency Fernando Ribadeneira Fernández Salvador

Ambassador for Ecuador

50 O'Connor Street, Suite 316

Ottawa, Ontario K1P 6L2

Email: mecuacan@rogers. com

Fax: (613) 235-5776


Business & human rights: Weekly Update - July 25, 2007

From the Business & Human Rights Resource Centre:

Weekly Update: Business & Human Rights Resource Centre - 25 July 2007

Principales noticias / Articles de premier plan:

The top stories include / Las noticias incluyen / Les articles

* Oxford Analytica comments on UN Special Representative John Ruggie's
second report, and looks ahead to his remaining mandate

* Ghana conference: Concerns raised about abuses by private security
companies in Africa

* Nigerian Govt. adds new claims in lawsuit over Pfizer's 1996 drug
trials said to have led to death & disability of children
- also included: Pfizer statement on lawsuit (May 2007)

* Indonesia "first nation on earth to legislate Corporate Social
Responsibility" after House of Representatives passes bill
- also included: analysis by CSR Asia

* Philippines law restricting baby milk formula advertisements
supported by UNICEF & WHO, opposed by industry group - Supreme Court weighs

* Business Roundtable of US CEOs urges action on climate change

* UK approves "Corporate Manslaughter" bill to hold corporate
executives accountable for workplace deaths due to gross negligence

* Case study on Sasol - implications of UN Global Compact human rights
principles for its operations in developing countries

* Lawsuit in USA against Drummond for alleged complicity in killing of
Colombian union leaders is first Alien Tort Claims Act case against a
company to reach trial - analysis & update

* Chiquita sued in USA for allegedly funding Colombian paramilitaries

* Amnesty Intl. & Saferworld report says EU firms sell components to
India for helicopters that Burmese military will use, undermining
sanctions on Burma

* Palestinian Authority: Aspen Institute announces new public-private
initiative to support economic development

* So. Africa - North West Province: Concerns over platinum mines'
impacts on worker & community health (further to our 18 July Update) - we
invited Lonmin to respond, but we have not received a reply

* Español: Demandan a Chiquita en EE.UU. por su presunta complicidad
con crímenes de paramilitares en Colombia

* Español: Centroamérica: Exigen respetar derechos de obreras en las
maquilas ante la Comisión Interamericana de Derechos Humanos

* Español: Curso sobre Responsabilidad Social Empresarial y Derechos
Humanos en Cartagena, Colombia - 16-18 julio

* Español: Argentina: Wal Mart comparece ante la Cámara de Diputados
por alegaciones de prácticas antisindicales, afirmando que respeta a

* Français : « Roquettes, armes et moteurs fabriqués au sein de l'UE
risquent d'enfreindre l'embargo sur les armes à destination du Myanmar »,
selon Amnesty & Saferworld

* Français : AXA renonce à investir pour compte propre dans les
producteurs de bombes à sous-munitions - Amnesty & Handicap appellent au
groupe à sensibiliser ses clients & gestionnaires

Friday, July 20, 2007

Corpwatch report on Barrick Gold

For some background on Pascua Lama, read this Corpwatch report on the global impact of Barrick Gold's activities. It contains a case study on Pascua Lama.

Thursday, July 19, 2007

Public Declaration addressed to Stephen Harper

This is from The Dominion, a progressive Canadian blog. It's a Public Declaration signed by Chilean environmental and social justice activists, and received by Barrick Gold to be given to Stephen Harper:
Santiago, July 18, 2007

Prime Minister of Canada supports Barrick Gold and refuses audience with Communities affected by Pascua Lama

We declare:

1. It is abhorrent that Stephen Harper, under the pretext of a state visit, intervenes openly and shamelessly on behalf of a mining company whose operations are questionable environmentally, legally, ethically and socially.

2. It is inconceivable that the maximum authority in a country like Canada, that promotes and supports foreign mining investments at a state level (with the money of all Canadians), shows a total lack of consideration for the effects that these investments generate in communities where mining projects are developed.

3. We find it worrying that Steven Harper’s agenda includes meetings with the president and with Barrick Gold, the mining company in question, while failing to listen to the voices of citizens accusing murder and destruction ten years after the FTA between the two countries. It demonstrates the double standards of the Prime Minister, who opened public Roundtables on corporate social responsibility in his own country, while here in Chile he refuses to meet with civil society.

4. We reject the political pressure suggested by this visit, which comes at the same moment at which Barrick is encountering serious difficulties: on June 21, the opening of mine areas was delayed for the fourth time, in mid July the Inter American Commission for Human Rights will determine whether or not they receive for processing the territorial usurpation dispute put forward by the Diaguita community of Huascoaltinos. Three weeks ago the congress showed their concern with irregularities brought forward by the community of Valle del Huasco and promised to strike up an investigatory commission on Pascua Lama. In the coming weeks, the State Defense Council will determine what role they will play in a dispute being carried out by the community for irreparable environmental damage with regards to the destruction of glaciers. At the moment there is no taxation agreement between Chile and Argentina for the Pascua Lama project, along with a series of other irregularities.

5. For all of these reasons, we declare Mr. Harper a persona non grata and we demand that the Chilean government defend our sovereignty and ask the Canadian diplomats for answers regarding Harper’s statements, and Harper’s agenda, which does very little to maintain the health of the bilateral relations in our countries.


Latin American Observatory on Environmental Conflicts (OLCA)
Colectivo Rexistencia
Movimiento Ciudadano Anti Pascualama
Programa Radial “Semillas de Agua”
Coordinadora de Defensa de los Valles del Tránsito y El carmen (Región de Atacama)
Casa Taller La Lucha
Environmental and Social Justice Action Network (RAJAS, Santiago)

Harper visits Barrick Gold office

There were protests outside the Santiago office of Barrick Gold during Stepehn Harper's visit yesterday, according to the CBC:
The protesters claim the company's gold and silver Pascua Lama Project in the Andes Mountains is displacing indigenous people, polluting rivers and damaging three glaciers — charges the company denies.

Harper said Tuesday that as far as he knows Barrick "follows Canadian standards of corporate social responsibility." He said that it was up to Chile and Argentina to determine whether the company was meeting environmental protection standards.

Karyn Keenan, program officer for the Halifax Initiative, an environmental coalition, said that the organization was worried Harper had not been properly informed of the issues surrounding the project.

"We're also concerned that Prime Minister Harper's visit to the Barrick offices might be viewed as a gesture of support for the project, just when the Chilean congress is considering forming a special investigatory commission to evaluate alleged irregularities with the approval process for the mine," Keenan said.

Lucio Cuenca, national co-ordinator of the Latin American Observatory on Environmental Conflicts, agreed with Keenan, claiming the visit gives the project the "tacit approval" of the prime minister.

The local defence council is considering suing Barrick for the alleged destruction of the glaciers, Cuenca said. A human rights complaint has been lodged with the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights, he added.
Accusations being studied

A committee of lawmakers from Chile's chamber of deputies is studying the accusations.

One 2002 environmental report by the General Water Directorship estimates the three glaciers have shrunk by 50 to 70 per cent, allegedly as a result of work done during Barrick's exploratory phase, such as road building.

Runoff from the glaciers fuels watersheds in the area, supplying water to many communities.

"There's a shortage of water in the summertime, and it's only sustained because of the glaciers," one protester told CBC News. "Because of the destruction of the glaciers, there won't be water in the short term, there won't be water for the communities."

Wednesday, July 18, 2007

Business & human rights: Weekly Update - July 18, 2007

Weekly Update: Business & Human Rights Resource Centre - 18 July 2007

Principales noticias / Articles de premier plan:

The top stories include / Las noticias incluyen / Les articles

* So. Africa: Bench Marks Foundation report says platinum mines in
North West Province putting workers' & communities' health at risk
- Responses by Anglo Platinum, Implats, Xstrata
- We also invited Lonmin to respond but they have not yet done so. We
will indicate in next week's Update whether or not they have responded.

* Israel/Occupied Territories: Israeli military use of Volvo Group
machinery for destruction of Palestinians' homes - rejoinder by Adri
Nieuwhof (further to our 11 July Update)
- We have invited Volvo Group to comment further

* OECD Guidelines complaint brought against BHP Billiton over alleged
involvement in forced evictions in Colombia
- Article includes BHP Billiton response

* Bangladesh: Allegations of poverty wages, excessive hours, other
abuses at factories supplying Primark, Asda, Tesco - article includes
company responses

* Association of Ghana Industries launches Business Code that includes
human rights principles

* Bulgaria: Roma discrimination lawsuits against companies on the

* Dem Rep of Congo: NGO report alleges flaws in military court trial
over Kilwa massacre that acquitted soldiers & Anvil Mining employees

* "Is HIV a time bomb under the mining industry?" (Reuters)
- Anglo American response

* "Business guide to partnering with NGOs and the United Nations" (by
UN Global Compact, Dalberg, Financial Times)

* China: Shanxi province prosecutes officials involved in brick kiln
forced labour scandal - but widely criticised for soft approach

* EU court bans Syngenta's paraquat herbicide for not meeting health
- Articles include comments by Syngenta

* Peru: Restaurant closed & fined for alleged discrimination against
customers with darker skin

* Español: Grupo de trabajo de la ONU sobre el uso de mercenarios
resalta abusos por parte de empresas de seguridad que reclutan a Chilenos
para enviarlos a Irak

* Español: Perú: Cierran establecimiento "Café del Mar" en Miraflores
por discriminar a clientes

* Español: España: Viajes Mogador firma el código de conducta contra el
turismo sexual infantil

* Español: Perú: Gobierno ratifica el convenio 176 de la OIT, sobre la
seguridad y salud en las minas, que impone varios deberes sobre los

* Español: El Salvador: Policía Nacional reprime protestas contra la
privatización del agua

* Français : Rép. Dém. du Congo : Victimes du massacre de Kilwa qui a
impliqué des employés d'Anvil Mining « privées de justice » par les
failles dans le procès, selon plusieurs ONGs congolaises & internationales

* Français : Tribunal européen interdit l'herbicide paraquat de
Syngenta à cause des effets sur la santé

* Français : Brésil : Chef du peuple Surui fait un accord avec Google
Earth pour combattre la déforestation illégale en Amazonie

AI report on the killing of trade unionists in Columbia

An Amnesty report on the death of trade unionists in Columbia released at the beginning of July is also relevant to Stephen Harper's trip to Latin America:

You can find a summary to the report here. Here is an excerpt:
More than 2,000 trade unionists have been killed and more than 180 have been victims of enforced disappearance in Colombia over the last two decades. In more than 90 per cent of cases, those responsible have not been brought to justice. Despite a reduction in recent years in the number of trade unionists killed, Amnesty International (AI) considers that the human rights situation facing trade unionists remains serious. The Colombian authorities have taken some steps to improve their safety. However, more decisive action must be taken to ensure that freedom of association rights are respected, in practice as well as in law.

Despite the supposed demobilization of army-backed paramilitary groups, trade unionists continue to be threatened and killed by paramilitaries who have ostensibly been demobilized. The security forces have also been directly responsible for killing trade unionists and instigating arbitrary criminal proceedings against them. AI considers that a co-ordinated military-paramilitary strategy designed to undermine the work of trade unionists continues to be pursued both through their physical elimination and by seeking to discredit the legitimacy of trade union work. Guerrilla forces have also been responsible for killings of trade unionists.

It is not always possible to determine the motivation behind killings or death threats against trade unionists. In the context of Colombia’s long-running internal armed conflict, trade unionists have often been targeted for human rights abuses because of their political affiliation or motives other than their trade union activities. However, there is a pattern of human rights abuses against trade unionists taking place in the context of labour disputes which indicates that trade unionists are targeted precisely because of their trade union work.

AI considers that the international community has an important role to play in efforts to guarantee the right to freedom of association in Colombia. The decision of the International Labour Organization (ILO) in 2006 to appoint a permanent representative to Colombia to observe freedom of association rights provides a welcome opportunity for the international community to monitor closely the human rights crisis faced by trade unionists and to call on the Colombian authorities to take decisive action to ensure their safety.

Tuesday, July 17, 2007

Power of a Signature

As my first post on this blog, I thought I'd share a little inspiration with an Amnesty video that recently won a Gold award at the Cannes Lion 2007. It reminds us of the power of our signature: It's well worth the 2min 19secs.

For ideas on where your signature can make a difference right now relating to Business & Human Rights, go to

Monday, July 16, 2007

Following Stephen Harper in Latin America

There are are a variety of human rights concerns that Stephen Harper ought to raise during his visit to Latin America, not the least of which are those related to the activities of Barrick Gold in Chile. The Toronto Star reports that
The most controversial stop on the trip could come Wednesday in Santiago, Chile. There, Harper will visit the offices of Barrick Gold, whose proposed Pascua Lama gold and silver mine in the Andes on the Chile-Argentine border has become a rallying point for critics of multinational mining operations.

Reports that the company's explorations have eroded the size of three glaciers by more than half have some Chilean lawmakers calling for a halt to planned operations and a probe into the environmental effects of Barrick's activities.
Prior to the trip, a BHR activist stated clearly what her expectations are:
Karen Keenan, of the Halifax Initiative, which keeps an eye on Canadian investment in developing countries, said corporate responsibility standards should guide behaviour in areas of environmental performance, human rights, public reporting and transparency. She said an oversight body should be created to conduct independent investigations and resolve conflicts.
Further to this, here is a release from the New Democratic Party on the issue. Here's an excerpt:
On the eve of the Prime Minister’s visit to Colombia and Chile, the NDP is demanding that Stephen Harper end his government’s stonewalling on proposed Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) legislation to fight human rights and environmental abuses by Canadian extractive companies doing business in South America.

“If Harper is serious about a constructive role for Canada in this part of the world, let him prove it to citizens here in Canada and communities across Central and South America through concrete actions,” said NDP Foreign Affairs Critic Alexa McDonough. “He should start by implementing new and robust standards of Corporate Social Responsibility for Canadian companies operating in the developing world.”
We will follow events as they unfold.

Wednesday, July 11, 2007

Irene Khan on the Global Compact

This from an address by Amnesty International Secretary-General Irene Khan at the Opening Plenary of the Global Compact Leadership Summit 2007, in which she suggests ways of improving the Global Compact:
The Global Compact needs to find ways to hold participants accountable for upholding its principles. The delisting process that has come into operation recently is a step towards integrity -- but it is based largely on technical and procedural grounds, and is not being applied to ensure substantive compliance. Experience shows that voluntary approaches that incorporate compliance elements have much greater public credibility than those that are simply exhortations.

As a peer learning forum, all Compact members have an obligation to push each other to higher levels of performance. Amnesty International would encourage participants to consider a robust peer-review mechanism. The best performing companies can help to raise the bar by holding each other to account. It is time to scale up on compliance.

The UN is a valuable brand, and both the UN and companies has a responsibility to make ensure that there are no free-riders in the Compact.

The Global Compact is a voluntary initiative. Voluntary approaches are important, but no matter how good they are, they have some inherent limitations by their nature of being voluntary: by definition they involve an "opt-in" approach (and therefore the possibility also of "opting-out" by companies). They do not -- and cannot -- deal with the so-called "laggard" companies, who will not join.

Looking at it from the perspective of human rights, voluntary initiatives have a limitation -- they offer some protection, for some human rights, for some people. This is problematic because human rights, by their very nature, are universal guarantees -- they apply to all people, in every part of the world at all times.

This is why Amnesty International, while supporting voluntary initiatives, is pressing for UN global standards on business and human rights that will apply across borders to all companies, whether they operate in China or Canada, Malawi or Switzerland. Such global standards will provide governments with clear, common guidelines on how to address corporate behaviour on human rights. It will help to create a level playing field, set some common expectations, and build trust among customers, shareholders, investors and the community.

Governments have the primary responsibility for human rights -- and global standards on corporate responsibility for human rights will also help clarify and strengthen their responsibilities towards companies and towards people.

That is why Amnesty International hopes that while the Compact itself is a voluntary initiative, the Compact as such and its members as individual companies will support binding global standards and contribute to their development in the United Nations.
Unfortunately, the final declaration falls far short of expectations, according the International Federation of Human Rights:
The declaration adopted by participants is supposed to establish a roadmap for the future of the initiative and deepen their commitment. In fact, the commitments of corporations remain extremely weak. Businesses merely commit “to advance the implementation of the UN Global Compact and its ten principles” and to “give concrete meaning to a principle-based approach in (their) strategy, operations and culture”, and to seek to mobilise business units, and business partners to commit to the UN Global Compact its 10 principles.

The most important commitment taken by corporations is to report on their activities through annual communications on progress on their environmental and social performances. This demand had been made previously by the Global Compact. Companies that have not reported on their practices, two years after joining the Global compact and every year thereafter have now been listed as “non-communicating”. For the first time this year, the Annual Review of the Global Compact provided an insight into the actions of business participants to implement the ten principles. These are important first steps, but they remain largely insufficient.

Indeed, after 7 years, no mechanism has been set up within the Global Compact to monitor the commitments made by corporations. As a result, corporations that directly violate or are complicit of violations of human rights, labour, anti-corruption and environmental standards would still remain members of the initiative, and publicly benefit from this adherence.

FIDH hopes that UN Secretary General’s warning will be heard and that the activities of corporate participants to the Global Compact will be seriously monitored, and that members found not complying with the principles will- at a minimum - be excluded from the initiative.
(hyperlink added by this blog author).

Business & human rights: Weekly Update - July 11, 2007

From the Business & Human Rights Resource Centre:

Weekly Update: Business & Human Rights Resource Centre - 11 July 2007

Principales noticias / Articles de premier plan:

The top stories include / Las noticias incluyen / Les articles

* "Business and Human Rights - the Evolving International Agenda", by
John Ruggie

* John Ruggie questionnaire for national human rights institutions

* Indonesia: Friends of the Earth calls on major banks to withhold
further loans from Lapindo Brantas gas project until it compensates people
displaced by Sidoarjo mud volcano disaster
- Responses by Barclays, Credit Suisse, Fortis, Santos
- Medco Energi indicated it has sold its interest in the project
- Natixis, Energi Mega Persada have not yet responded
- Merrill Lynch declined to respond

* UN Global Compact Leaders Summit: Speeches, reports & new initiatives
- Includes webcasts of speeches by Ban Ki-moon, Irene Khan, Neville
Isdell; Bernard Kouchner; others

* Israel: Volvo bulldozers photographed in destruction of Bedouin Arab
villages - US church group urges divestment
- Volvo Group response

* Nigeria: Chinese bakery owners arrested after their Nigerian workers
found caged near oven

* France: Adecco and L'Oréal subsidiary Garnier found guilty of racial
discrimination in recruitment campaign

* "Human Rights and Business Learning Tool": Office of the High
Commissioner for Human Rights & UN Global Compact

* Goldman Sachs publishes investment framework incorporating Global
Compact principles on human rights, labour, environment, corruption, &
says "leadership on these issues is crucial"
- Includes list of 44 firms Goldman Sachs believes will outperform,
partly for environmental/social reasons

* CAFOD calls on Argos, Goldsmiths to sign 12 "Golden Rules" to reduce
harmful social & environmental impacts of gold mining
- Argos response
- We have not yet received a response from Goldsmiths - if we do we
will include it in a future Update

* "Beyond monitoring: A new vision for sustainable supply chains"
(Business for Social Responsibility)

* Español: Ecuador: En continuación a la actualización de la semana
pasada, la Fundación Regional de Asesoría en Derechos Humanos (INREDH) le
contesta a Ecuavital Biox

* Español: Amnistía premia a periodista hondureña amenazada después de
investigar abusos laborales por parte de empresas de seguridad

* Español: EE.UU.: Comienza juicio contra Drummond por su presunta
colaboración en el asesinato de sindicalistas en Colombia - caso sentaría

* Español: Brasil: Liberan a más de 1000 trabajadores en condiciones de
- Pará Pastoril e Agrícola (Pagrisa) niega todo; Petrobras suspende
compras a Pagrisa

* Español: En cumbre del Pacto Mundial, presidente de Repsol dice que
reto de empresas es hacer más extensivo el desarrollo económico y social

* Español: Cuestionario de John Ruggie para las instituciones
nacionales de derechos humanos

* Français : France : Garnier, filiale de L'Oréal, et Adecco condamnés
pour discrimination raciale à l'embauche

* Français : Bernard Kouchner, ministre français des Affaires
étrangères, dit que Total ne fait pas assez pour pousser la Birmanie à libérer
les prisonniers politiques

* Français : Discours d'Irene Khan, secrétaire générale d'Amnesty
International, au sommet du Pacte mondial

* Français : Rép Dém du Congo : Perenco mise en cause dans la pollution
- la société a mis à pied d'oeuvre une équipe pour débarrasser les
sites touchés du pétrole

* Français : "Chaîne d'approvisionnement : pour dépasser la
surveillance" - Business for Social Responsibility propose 4 piliers

* Français : Questionnaire de John Ruggie à l'attention des
institutions nationales des droits de l'homme

Wednesday, July 4, 2007

Business & human rights: Weekly Update - July 3, 2007

From the Business & Human Rights Resource Centre:

Weekly Update: Business & Human Rights Resource Centre - 4 July 2007

Principales noticias / Articles de premier plan:

The top stories include / Las noticias incluyen / Les articles

* Report on meeting between UN Special Representative John Ruggie &
other UN human rights mandate holders
- Mandates represented include: housing; disappearances; health;
indigenous peoples; mercenaries; torture; toxic waste

* Brazil: Authorities free over 1000 "debt slaves" working in
"horrendous" conditions on sugar plantation

* Dem. Rep. of Congo: Military court acquits 3 Anvil mining employees
of complicity in war crimes
- Global Witness, RAID, raise concerns about trial process

* UN Global Compact summit, Geneva, 5-6 July
- Survey of Compact participants finds "much room for advancement" in
business' approach to human rights
- Also provided: China Daily on Chinese participation; NGO position
(Amnesty Intl., ActionAid, Greenpeace, Berne Declaration); Intl. Chamber
of Commerce position; Save the Children survey of Swedish companies;
Goldman Sachs investment framework incorporating Compact principles

* So. Africa: Farmworkers make the decisions in social, educational &
health initiatives funded by Waitrose

* Are biofuels causing more harm than good? (BBC radio debate)

* China: New labour law enacted - labour activists welcome law but
express concerns on implementation

* Colombia: Amnesty Intl. highlights "systematic" attacks against trade

* Interview with Al Gore and David Blood: "Investing in sustainability"
- Refers to positive steps by Wal-Mart, General Electric, Novo Nordisk,
Johnson Controls

* Save the Children: "Corporate Social Responsibility and children's
rights in South Asia"

* Español: Ecuador: Acusan a guardias de empresa remediadora de
reprimir a defensores de derechos humanos
- Respuesta de Ecuavital Biox: "Los funcionarios no fueron
agredidos...hemos pedido el reporte a la empresa Jara Seguridad sobre el suceso"

* Español: Perú: Acusan a minera Miski Mayo (filial de Companhia Vale
do Rio Doce, CVRD) de formar "cuadros de defensa" armados
- CVRD declina comentar; Sociedad Nacional de Minería, Petróleo y
Energía "conversará" con Miski Mayo para que responda

* Español: Colombia: Informe de Amnistía Internacional destaca
agresiones "sistemáticas" contra sindicalistas

* Español: Kohl's retira prendas de Daisy Fuentes de sus tiendas luego
de alegaciones de abusos contra trabajadores en Guatemala

* Español: Premian a las 15 empresas "más responsables socialmente" en

* Français : Dém Rép du Congo : 3 employés d'Anvil Mining sont
acquittés de complicité dans des crimes de guerre
- Des organisations des droits de l'homme disent que la Cour a violé
les principes d'un procès juste et équitable

* Français : Chine: Gouvernement demande à la Banque mondiale de
censurer son étude pour cacher 750 000 morts à cause de la pollution

* Français : Rapport d'Amnesty International décrit les "attaques
systématiques" contre les syndicalistes en Colombie

* Français : Classement de Greenpeace « Pour une high tech responsable
» - Dans la dernière édition, Nokia est en tête, Apple s'améliore, LG &
Sony en dernières places