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Part of the reality of social movements in Mesoamerica is the mobilization and exchange of information among the groups that resist the extractivist process, says Juan Almendares, who travelled to Oaxaca, Mexico from Honduras to participate at the Mesoamerican Meeting of Struggle Against Mining held from January 17 to 20.
Movimiento Madre Tierra in Honduras, a member of Friends of the Earth Latin America and the Caribbean (ATALC) was founded 10 years ago by Juan Almendares Bonilla. The group’s main goals are the protection and preservation of natural resources in Honduras with a special emphasis on solidarity in Latin America.
Almendares, a doctor, defends the idea that health is supplemented and explained by nature, which is under threat by transnational corporations and the loss of biodiversity. “Before digging the mountains they dig in our brains to dominate and domesticate people in alliance with the national oligarchies”, Almendares said in interview with Mónica Montalvo for Real World Radio.
Madre Tierra is a grassroots organization of poor, urban and rural communities whose main task is to investigate and promote a healthy environment. The organization is a member of the M4, the Mesoamerican Movement of Resistance to the Mining Extractive Model.
After the meeting held in Oaxaca, Almendres sent a message of solidarity, which, he believes, is necessary in the current state of affairs in his country after the coup d’état staged in 2009.
On the role of universities and the academic sector he said: “we often see that universities are domesticated and think with the mindset of colonialism or of recolonialism. Of course not all the academia thinks like that, we have hope in our younger generations and we wouldn’t like to see them being tools of the imperialistic interests”.
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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