Consultations at Risk: Advances in the Escobal Mine Consultation Overshadowed by Constitutional Crisis

For more than two years, the Guatemalan Ministry of Energy and Mines (MEM) refused to accredit the 59 representatives elected by the Xinka to participate in a consultation over Pan American Silver's controversial Escobal mine. In September 2018, the Constitutional Court ruled that the state violated Xinka people's Indigenous rights when it failed to consult them prior to the start of mine operations. The Court suspended the project and ordered MEM to conduct a consultation with affected Xinka communities according to international standards. However, this two-year delay in accepting Xinka representatives ? in violation of the court ruling - effectively halted all progress. Through persistent community-led action and a focused international advocacy campaign, the Xinka succeeded in pressuring MEM in October 2020 to finally concede, allowing for the stalled consultation to begin moving forward.

File Type: pdf
Categories: Guatemala
Author: Earthworks, IPS – Global Economy Programs, Maritimes-Guatemala Breaking the Silence Network