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Next week will take place the 12th Gathering of MAPDER (Movement of People Affected by Dams and in Defense of Rivers), under the slogan “For Peoples Unity in Defense of Rivers”, more precisely from November 10th to 12th. One of the main objectives of the gathering this year is to support the resistance of the communities of Cuenca del río La Antigua (one of the most important rivers of the state of Veracruz), threatened by the Multipurpose Project Xalapa, by the multinational Odebrecht of Brazilian origin.
Once again the MAPDER gathering takes place in the state of Veracruz. “It’s not a coincidence” that it is going to be carried out in this state, says Rosalinda Hidalgo, member of the Veracruz Assembly for Initiatives and Environmental Defense and of MAPDER Veracruz, interviewed by Mónica Montalvo from Hij@s de la Tierra. “There are more than 112 hydroelectric projects” currently planned for that state, the militant starts explaining.
This Odebrecht’s project would affect the municipality of Jalcomulco: “here they want to make a dam 700 meters wide and 100 meters high, with a reservoir of 400 hectares to produce energy and supposedly to supply water for Xalapa, although this is a terrible contradiction since the water would have to rise more than a thousand meters, and they also want to use an irrigation system.”
The year-and-a-half resistance in Jalcomulco “has managed to make the state government and the company to withdraw at least temporarily,” says Hidalgo. “It’s a great achievement, and they will be our hosts.”
The gathering will discuss aspects of Mexico’s energy reform of 2013, “mainly regarding fracking, dams, mines. And also the impacts of water privatization, because in Veracruz, part of the Brazilian company holds the concession for municipal water services.”
La oposición a la minería debe entenderse como la lucha por los derechos que esa actividad no respeta, pues “cada derecho que se le otorga a una empresa, es un derecho que se le resta a una comunidad”, asegura el coordinador del Observatorio de Conflictos Mineros de América Latina (OCMAL), César Padilla.
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