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Panama's Martinelli bans mining on indigenous lands

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Panamanian President Ricardo Martinelli enacted a law that prohibits mining on indigenous lands and requires that local native authorities be consulted before work can begin on new hydroelectric plants.

Congress approved the law March 22 after the government reached an agreement with the Ngobe Bugle natives, Panama's largest indigenous ethnic group, to end violent protests.

The government agreed to stop mineral exploration but refused to halt dam construction, saying the nation's fuel bill would rise considerably without the hydroelectric energy plants.

Fuente: AFP