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Following the murders of two union leaders in Colombia in 2001, Jaime Blanco, a former contractor for the US-based coal company Drummond Co., was convicted of murder on 25 January 2013 and sentenced to nearly 38 years in prison.
The United Mine Workers of America (UMWA) is vehemently protesting against Peabody Energy’s attempts to deny pension and health care benefits for about 20,000 retired miners and dependents.
Workers at Carbones del Cerrejón, represented by their union, Sintracarbón, have begun a strike for improved working conditions. Negotiations failed to reach an agreement and the interim settlement deadline passed without the company making an acceptable offer.
Outside Africa’s annual meeting of mining corporates and senior government officials, activists protested the exclusion of civil society that represent the actual owners of the continent’s huge mineral wealth chanting, “nothing about us without us”.
Carbones de Cerrejón workers in Colombia have voted to go on strike at the beginning of February. Their union, Sintracarbón, is hoping that the company will make a new proposal that will meet workers’ demands and end the dispute that began on 29 November last year.
Chilean miners will receive an unprecedented bonus of 23 million pesos (US$ 48,665) and a 5 per cent pay rise as part of an early conclusion to negotiations. The miners’ union said it was only right that the company should share its profits with the workers.
Rio Tinto has agreed to resume negotiations with IndustriALL Global Union affiliate, the Australian Workers Union (AWU), after Fair Work Australia agreed that the majority of the workers at Bell Bay wanted to collectively bargain for pay and conditions.
IndustriALL Global Union has written to the Colombian president to protest at the threats made against the leaders of Sintracarbón trade union, who are negotiating with the company over working conditions.
Preparations are continuing for actions around the world marking the 2013 Mexico Days of Action, 18-24 February.
IndustriALL Global Union-affiliated Turkish mining trade union Genel Maden-Is has condemned the poor safety conditions at the Kozlu mine operated by a sub-contractor company where eight workers were killed on 7 January 2013.
At a meeting with UN human rights officials, community landowners and workers described how they had been evicted from their protest camp in Durango. They also said that Excellon violates human rights, has failed to comply with the lease it signed in 2008, and has threatened and harassed local people and workers.
Following a report to its Executive Committee meeting on a high level mission of IndustriALL affiliates to South Africa, IndustriALL reiterated its unequivocal support for the National Union of Mineworkers (NUM).
IndustriALL Global Union came together with local partners to carry out a successful Voluntary Counselling and Testing (VCT) campaign at the Konkola Copper Mine (KCM) in Zambia on World AIDS Day, 1 December 2012.
The union representing workers at the Colombian company Carbones del Cerrejón is currently negotiating to improve conditions for both permanent and outsourced workers and the whole community.
IndustriALL Global Union challenges claims by the Canadian mining company Excellon that all is well at its operations in Durango in Mexico.
The Ghana Mineworkers Union (GMWU) called for the ratification of the ILO Convention 176 on safety and health in mines, claiming the government is “mortgaging the health and safety of the mineworkers”.
With the support of IndustriALL, TUMEC held its first conference in November 2012 in the mining capital town of Lubumbashi in the Democratic Republic of Congo.
The proposed merger between giants Glencore and Xstrata goes to a shareholder vote on 20 November, as processes continue assessing the monopolistic concerns the merger brings.
In the third incident of violent police action at Xstrata’s South African Kroondal operations in a week, police fired on mineworkers during a protest on 13 November, arresting 37 including shop stewards.
Mining giant Rio Tinto is showing its anti-union character once again. In closing its Australian Blair Athol mine the company is paying lower redundancy packages to CFMEU union members than to other workers.
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