Thursday, January 13, 2005

Guatemalan peasants are attempting to prevent the transport of mining equipment to a gold mine which has been polluting the area. The government had been trying to negotiate safe transport of the cargo but gave up when it was revealed that it couldn't be done without the dismantling of the Solola city pedestrian bridge, which was built by volunteer labor. A force of more than 750 armed soldiers and police officers are now attempting to push the equipment through hostile territories. They have been met with a growing resistance, and a fair share of delays, since their journey began on December 6. Protesters have been pelting the convoy with sticks, stones, and the occasional bout of gunfire. Makeshift burning barricades have also been deployed by locals who were met with return gunfire and teargas. One farmer was killed and at least a dozen others have been injured.