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Direct Action and Repression: Update on the Anti-Mining Struggle in #Kouaoua, #NewCaledonia

Some news regarding the ongoing struggle against French nickel mining company SLN in the southwest Pacific ‘French Overseas Territory’ of so-called New Caledonia.

Originally published by Anarchists Worldwide. Source Attaque, translated by Anarchists In Narrm / Melbourne.  Image above: Arson attack against the SLN center that took place in May 2018.

Note: Enough is Enough is not organizing any of these events, we are publishing this text for people across the US and Europe to be able to see what is going on and for documentation only.

The SLN (subsidiary of French company Eramet) nickel mining center in Kouaoua was attacked once again by militant activists angered at the pollution caused by the industry. The mining site has been attacked about 15 times since the beginning of the year. During the latest attack on the night of November 21st, 15 company trucks and other heavy vehicles were torched and a large section of the ‘Serpentine’ conveyor was also set on fire.

The site had only just reopened in late October after being blockaded for nearly 3 months by Indigenous youth in protest against the environmental destruction caused by the nickel industry. The young people were also angered by a deal that was struck between SLN and so-called community ‘leaders’ that promised jobs and investment in community projects- promises that SLN have not followed through on.

An investigation carried out by the Gendarmerie Research Section into ongoing attacks against the SLN (Société le Nickel) mining center led to 3 people being arrested several days after the latest attack.

The 3 local men aged 21, 28 and 31 years old were all taken into custody. One of the men allegedly confessed to his involvement in a previous arson attack against the ‘Serpentine’ conveyor. The second man also allegedly confessed to his involvement in a previous fire. The third man flatly denied any involvement in the most recent attack as well as another attack on 11.06.18 for which he was sentenced to 18 months imprisonment on 19.06.18. He is now serving his sentence of imprisonment while the other 2 men are remanded in custody awaiting judicial proceedings.

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