Reporting on the conflict between the mega mining project Conga and the people of Cajamarca, Peru
On the 28th of July when most of the population were celebrating national holidays, César Estrada was attacked by DINOES agents while carrying out his journalistic work. On that day, at about 9:30 in the morning, he was walking along with others from the Laguna Azul (Blue Lagoon) to the Laguna Mamacocha (Mamacocha Lagoon) to visit the Bambamarca Guardians of the Lagoons. He was observed by a workers of the mine wearing orange vests and carrying mountain passes, who called the police. The police came in a 4 × 4 truck and intercepted the reporter and his companions at the confluence of the streams of the Laguna Azul and Pencayoc, where the river Jadibamba begins. They snatched his equipment – namely his camera, his cell phone and his internet modem. They kicked and assaulted him with the butt of a gun while threatening to kill him. They took his camera while he was being insulted. A policeman identified verbally as Maycol was the person who ordered and directed these attacks against the courageous journalist who was only carrying out his professional duties.
We recently denounced the climate of fear that has been installed in the provinces of Celendin and Bambamarca. This treacherous fact constitutes one violation more of the right to information and media. At this very moment charges are being filed in relation to this case. The brave and active César Estrada said that this aggression is not going to wear down his conviction in the fight against the Conga mining project – on the contrary, he feels outraged by these events and now feels much stronger to continue his work and to report in the media all instances of abuses by the mine, reporting on the rights of his people and his homeland – Cajamarca.
To see the original report in spanish click here.
Video by Vilma Rodríguez Chihuán