A municipal judge in the Philippines dismissed charges against nine Ifugao Indigenous people who are members of the Didipio Earth Savers Mulitpurpose Association (DESAMA). DESAMA has long claimed that the charges were trumped up in an attempt to intimidate and harass Indigenous people who oppose construction of an OceanaGold mine in their community. Mine construction has displaced Indigenous landowners and threatens the water supply in this agricultural region. The judge’s decision reinforces DESAMA’s opinion that the charges constituted a “Strategic Lawsuit Against Public Participation” (SLAPP) suit, a tactic aimed at eliminating public opposition to corporate projects. See the complete article by the Legal Rights and Natural Resources Center here.
Cultural Survival’s action alert to stop mining in Didipio here.
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