Urgent Action: Community activist shot for opposition to Marlin Mine

The following was reposted from the Guatemala Human Rights Commission/USA

On June 25, Colom declared suspension of Marlin Mine operations, in compliance with a recent Inter-American Commission ruling. Two weeks later, Teodora Hernandez was shot in the head, and others were physically intimidated.

Sign our petition to denounce this violence and request investigation and protection for community members

On Wednesday July 7, at 7:00pm, Teodora Antonia Hernández Cinto was shot in San José Nueva Esperanza, a neighborhood of Ágel, San Miguel Ixtahuacán, San Marcos. Two unknown young men entered her house, asking for a cup of coffee. While she was handing them the cup, they shot her in the head, near her right eye. They then ran towards the village of San José Ixcaniche. She was taken to the health clinic and has since been transferred to the hospital; her current condition is unknown.

Doña Teodora Antonia Hernández Cinto is part of the resistance movement in defense of indigenous rights, including land and water rights, against the Marlin mine and the violent aggressions committed by the Montana subsidiary of Goldcorp, a Canadian mining company. She has been threatened several times for her participation in this movement. In June 2009, she was part of the group in Saqmuj that fought for the right to water, when the Goldcorp Company tried to take over the land and water sources from the community.

On July 2, at 4:30pm, on the road from San Antonio to the Marlin mine, Juan Méndez was walking along the street when a truck, labeled “Special,” from Perez Transports, approached him. The truck is owned by Fernando Pérez from  San José Nueva Esperanza. When the truck was 50 feet from Juan, the driver crossed over to the other side of the road and tried to hit him. Juan escaped by climbing up an embankment. Juan is well known for his opposition to the Marlin mine.

On July 5, at 6:30pm, the two daughters of Gregoria Crisanta Pérez, a well-known organizer and activist, were walking home from school in the village of Agel. A car crossed over to their side of the road, with the intent of hitting the girls. It was identified as a Montana/Goldcorp company car.

On July 7 at 11:30pm in Agel, shots rang out near the houses of a group of community members in solidarity with Teodora.

We urge the Guatemalan government to:

1.    Guarantee the safety of community members in opposition to the Marlin mine
2.    Comply with the precautionary measures provided by the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights to protect communities defending their rights
3.    Hold the Montana/Goldcorp Company responsible for any acts of intimidation and threats, the great majority of which have been made by company workers.
4.    Carry out a thorough and timely investigation of the above stated incidents and bringing those responsible to justice.

Sign on to denounce this violence and request investigation and protection for community members


In solidarity,

Amanda and Kelsey


P.S. You can read more about this issues on our website:

Fact sheet on Guatemalan Human Rights Defenders

Recent news on mining and land rights in Guatemala



  1. Christine Leclerc

    Thanks for your work. Re: spoken word pieces being done around mining in a Canadian context, have you heard about the work Stephen Collis has been doing. Highly performable apostrophes addressed to Goldcorp! Cheers and thanks for your work.

    P.S. Would you consider contributing work to a project called the Enpipe Line (currently housed on my website http://christineleclerc.com, but soon to move to a new home at http://enpipeline.org).

  2. Rachel Small

    Thanks Christine, I haven’t heard of Stephen’s work. Is any of it available online?

    Your project is super interesting. I’ll contribute a poem on your site straight away.

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