Let’s senda clear message: Withdraw your shameful lawsuit against El Salvador!
Today, the shareholders and Board of Directors of PacificRim Mining will meet for their Annual General Meeting in Vancouver, B.C. When the government and people of El Salvadorstopped Pacific Rim’s gold mines from opening, this Canadiancorporation opened a storefront in Nevada, and is now using the US-CentralAmerican Free Trade Agreement (CAFTA) to sue the Salvadoran government forhundreds of millions of dollars in ‘lost profits’.
The company has been telling their shareholders thatthey are still hopeful for a “resolution” with the Salvadorangovernment. However, after the 2009elections, El Salvadorfinally has a democratic government that is responding to the people’s demands. On Saturday, the President of El Salvador, Mauricio Funesreiterated his public commitment: “Iwill not authorize any mining exploration or exploitation project”and he welcomed the process underway in the Legislative Assembly to pass anational ban on metallic mining.
El Salvador is standing strong in the face of violentattacks against rural communities that oppose the mines and the openthreat of the World Bank lawsuit. We needyou to stand in solidarity with these struggles againstcorporate extortion, neocolonialism, and environmental racism in Latin America today!
Let’s keep Pacific Rim’sphone ringing off the hook all morning; solidarity activists will take over at the start of themeeting (3 pm PST) with a rally outside the conference center. Call Catherine McLeod-Seltzer, the Chair of theBoard of Directors today to let her know that she is up against the peoplesof El Salvador, Canada and the US!
1) Call Pacific Rim and tell them to drop the lawsuit and get out of El Salvador!See sample script below.
Call Catherine McLeod-Seltzer, Chair of theBoard of Directors in the Vancouver,BC office at (604) 689-1976.Call asearly as you can before she heads off to the shareholder meeting!
2) Email a letter to the editor of the Vancouver Sun to expose this corporateextortion! See sample letter below.
Send a short letter to the editor (200 words orless) at: firstname.lastname@example.org
SAMPLE CALL SCRIPT:
Hello. My name is_________ and I have been following Pacific Rim’s lawsuitagainst the government ElSalvador. I am calling with a message for the Board ofDirectors and all the shareholders who are meeting today.
The people of El Salvadorhave rejected the mine and that decision must be respected. Your lawsuit isa shameful ploy to rob the government of desperately-needed resources foryour own financial gain. But you have a chance to do the right thing attoday’s meeting. I call on you to make the decision to:
1. Immediately withdraw from Cabañas and cease allefforts to mine gold in ElSalvador.
2. Immediately withdraw your lawsuit against thegovernment of ElSalvador.”
SAMPLE TEXT OF LETTER TO THE EDITOR OF THE VANCOUVER SUN:
To the editors:
There is a newform of corporate extortion going on in Vancouver today which is not beingcovered by the Sun. PacificRim Mining is suing the government of El Salvador for, at minimum, $77million dollars for rejecting its proposed gold mine. This company is based in Vancouver and the Board of Directors,chaired by Catherine McLeod-Seltzer, has deep ties to the Canadian miningindustry. However, the company now claims to be American, at least Americanenough to sue ElSalvador through the U.S.-Central America Free Trade Agreement.
As worldwideresistance to the plundering of land and resources by Canadian miningcompanies grows, it seems the industry is getting desperate and moredangerous (the Sun previouslylooked in to Pacific Rim after three localenvironmentalists were murdered). Suing an entire nation, especially acountry like El Salvador,whose economy has been ransacked by centuries of exploitation and now“free” trade, because you could not convince local people tolet you destroy their lands, is not just immoral; it should be illegal.
Youcan also fax this letter to the VancouverSun at 604-605-2522 (Attn: Letters tothe Editor)