Klippensteins and Waddell Phillips statement regarding repressive raids against clients Angelica Choc and German Chub Choc in Guatemala —
October 27, 2021
We are alarmed and distressed to receive word that our Mayan Q’eqchi’ clients in Guatemala, Angelica Choc, German Chub Choc, and many other Mayan Q’eqchi’ community leaders were subjected to unjustified raids of their homes by Guatemalan Police and military earlier today. The raids appear to be a heavy-handed, targeted and retaliatory response to ongoing protests against the illegal operation of the Fenix mine now owned by Swiss company Solway Investment Group (formerly owned by Hudbay Minerals). Despite the existence of a Guatemalan Constitutional Court order suspending all operations at the Fenix mine, Guatemalan police and military have been deployed to the region to allow Solway to continue mining.
Angelica Choc and German Chub are plaintiffs in lawsuits in Canada against Hudbay Minerals regarding past human rights abuse at the Fenix Mine, including the killing of Adolfo Ich and the shooting of German Chub by mine company security personnel in 2009, and they may have been targeted for that reason.
We condemn in the strongest possible terms these unjustified raids and demand that:
- The Guatemalan police and military immediately stop all raids of private homes and return all property seized during the raids conducted to date;
- Solway Investment Group immediately complies with the Guatemalan Constitutional Court order suspending operations at the Fenix mine until proper consultations are completed.
Canadian Lawyers for Angelica Choc and German Chub
Klippensteins Barristers & Solicitors
Waddell Phillips PC