NPA Owns Up Attack On Mining Firm In South RP

March 11, 2008 at 8:40 am | Posted in 1 | 2 Comments
DAVAO CITY, Philippines (Mindanao Examiner / Mar. 11, 2008) – Philippine communist rebels on Tuesday have owned up the attack on a mining firm Compostela Valley province in Mindanao.

The New People’s Army, which is fighting for the establishment of Maoist state in the Philippines, said the raid on Apex Mining Company was a punishment for the firm’s failure to pay so-called “revolutionary” taxes and for environment destruction.
Col. Benito Antonio de Leon, spokesman for the Army’s 10th Infantry Division, said government troops were hunting down the raiders. He said about 50 rebels attacked March 6 the mining company near the village of Masara in Maco town.
Gunmen also disarmed the firm’s security guards and torched several equipments.
Apex is partly owned by international mining company called Crew Gold Corporation based in London and has interests in Lefa Corridor Gold Project in Guinea; Nalunaq Gold Mine in Greenland; and the Maco Gold Mine in the Philippines, where it employs close to 2,000 workers.
Rigoberto Sanchez, a rebel spokesman, said the raid on Apex should serve as a warning to other mining firms. “Such action should serve as a fair warning to other exploitative, oppressive and hostile big business entities whose operations are within the extensive reach of the NPA,” he said in a statement sent to the Mindanao Examiner.
He said the rebels carted five M16 automatic rifles and destroyed machineries owned by Apex Mining Company.
“The destruction of its machineries and the confiscation of five M16 rifles, communication equipment and computers should deliver a clear and strong message to the mining firm and other large-scale foreign mining firms in the country that the people’s army is not taking this imperialist and bureaucrat capitalist plunder sitting down,” Sanchez said.
In January, NPA rebels raided the Swiss firm, Sagittarius Mines Inc. (SMI), in South Cotabato’s Tampakan town. The attackers torched buildings and equipment and also raided a military post near the mining firm.
The NPA accused SMI of plunder, land grabbing and environment destruction and said the attack was a punishment. The rebels said the raid was in response to a longstanding demand of the people to put a stop to the firm’s operations in the area.
Indigenous tribes were protesting the operation of the SMI, saying, the mining activities allegedly encroached into ancestral lands and caused pollution in rivers and streams in Tampakan, which is considered a watershed area and is believed to be one of the world’s “best new large-scale copper gold mines,” with an estimated 11.6 million tons of copper and 14.6 million ounces of gold.
SMI is partly owned by Xstrata, one of the world’s largest mining companies based in Switzerland.
Rebel forces have previously raided other mining firms in Mindanao which refused to pay illegal taxation.
Last year, rebel forces also raided a private coal mining firm, the MG Mining Company, in Raja Kabunsuan village in Surigao del Sur’s Lingig town. The Philippines’ largest Muslim rebel group, Moro Islamic Liberation Front, last month also warned mining firms to stay away from ancestral lands in Mindanao.
MILF rebels have previously attacked and killed 13 Filipino miners working for the Calgary-based TVI in Zamboanga del Norte province after they ignored warnings to stop operation in Mount Canatuan in Siocon town, a sacred altar to an indigenous tribe called the Subanon whose ancestors settled in the area centuries ago.
The Philippines is estimated to have at least US$1 trillion unexploited treasure trove of minerals and is promoting the rejuvenation of the mining sector to boost the economy and cut its budget deficit and debt. (Mindanao Examiner)

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2 Comments »

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  1. […] View original here: NPA Owns Up Attack On Mining Firm In South RP […]

  2. Go deeper that what is made known to the public. You’ll be surprised to know that there are people who actively use the rebels to gain from the mining company. Or hit back at the company for dismissing corrupt personnel.


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