Kanaks take on Canadian nickel mining grant.
Two of New Caledonia's Kanak elders, Senator Dick Meureureu
and Chief Adrien Koroma, traveled to Toronto in April 2004 to attend the
Inco annual shareholders' meeting. They say that since the launch
of its 2001 Goro nickel-cobalt project, Canadian mining company Inco
Limited has refused to address the concerns of the indigenous people of
New Caledonia, including widespread environmental degradation and loss
of the region's unique biodiversity. The two elders called for
negotiations with the indigenous population and for immediate review of
the environmental impact assessment conducted by a team of independent
scientists. Joining the elders in protest were members of the Algonquin
First Nation, who danced and drummed in solidarity with the Kanak
elders. Despite ongoing opposition, an October 2004 press release
announced Inco's plan to proceed with the Goro mining project based
on its ability to meet "financial objectives." Contact
Mining-Watch Canada, www.miningwatch.ca, for details.