A state of emergency has been declared in the northern region of Cajamarca where, for days, farmers have been protesting against a mining project that could have negative social and environmental consequences.
The state of emergency will remain in force at least 60 days, authorizing the deployment of the army and banning public events. The order was issued last night by President Ollanta Humala, who was elected last July, after a day of fruitless negotiations between representatives of the Government and local communities.
Last week, the ‘campesinos’ of Cajamarca have erected several checkpoints and clashed repeatedly with police. Protesters oppose a project planned by the US mining company Newmont to establish a gold mine, valued at USD 4.8 billion, or over three and a half billion euros. According to the farmers, the project would end up drying up four lagoons, destroying the ecosystems of the area and throwing it into crisis economy based on agriculture and livestock.