Two miners employed by Torex Gold Resources of Mexico were killed during a peaceful strike by armed thugs hired by the Confederación de Trabajadores Mexicanos (CTM).
On 18 November, CTM thugs attacked the workers who had been on strike for 17 days at the Media Luna mine in Guerrero. Brothers Víctor and Marcelino Sahuanitla Peña were both killed in the attack.
About 600 miners are in dispute because they refused to join the CTM, which they claimed: “Does not defend their rights and constantly betrays, insults, attacks and threatens them and is completely subservient to the company’s interests".
They therefore decided to join Los Mineros (SNTMMSRM), affiliated to IndustriALL Global Union.
“The CTM’s armed thugs are responsible for one of the worst cases of repression of miners and residents. Los Mineros holds Torex Gold Resources, a Canadian company, the Labour and Social Welfare Ministry (STPS) and the local CTM branch responsible and demands criminal charges be laid against them so they do not remain unpunished for this vile and cowardly attack,”
said the union in an official statement.
Los Mineros and the company had been in talks since 13 November, and the Canadian company’s chief executive officer had agreed to resolve the dispute. However, he failed to do this.
Local CTM leaders involved in the attack were identified and later released by the same military patrol implicated in the disappearance of 43 students in Ayotzinapa in 2014.
IndustriALL’s General Secretary, Valter Sanches, has written to the President of Mexico, Enrique Peña Nieto, the Interior Ministry and the STPS to vigorously condemn the killing of the miners on strike at Media Luna and demand justice.
“IndustriALL Global Union urges the Mexican government to act immediately to ensure the safety of the striking workers and guarantee total respect for the fundamental rights of workers at the Media Luna mine, including freedom of association, the right to form a union and the right to collective bargaining as set out in International Labour Organization (ILO) Conventions 87 and 98,”
IndustriALL calls on the Mexican government to ensure that those responsible for the killings are tried and punished, as well as for a complete stop to the repression of the miners, and an investigation into Torex Gold Resources’ involvement in these violent acts.