Mining Resisters of the Year: Tŝilhqot’in Nation

AzacualpaPhotos retrieved from APTN News

BC Mining Resisters: Tŝilhqot’in Nation, Tl’esqox First Nation (Chief Francis Leceese)

Location: Fish Lake (known as Teztan Biny)

Mining Company: Taseko Mines Limited (Prosperity Mine project)

Written By: River Sun

Teztan Biny, an area of cultural and spiritual significance to the Tsilhqot’in Nation, is near the salmon-rich Dasiqox. Teztan Biny also provides critical wetlands and lake habitat for wild rainbow trout, moose, grizzly bear and many other mammals and migratory birds. Now the area is threatened by a proposal for a huge, open-pit copper-and-gold mine called the New Prosperity Mine. Although the mining proposal was approved for development by the provincial government in 2010 and received a drilling permit in 2017 to collect geotechnical information, it is still an ongoing battle.

The project has repeatedly been found–by communities and by the courts–to pose an unacceptable risk to the environment and specifically to Teztan Biny (“Fish Lake”). Yet, Taseko continues to disregard stanch community opposition, instead repeatedly pushing the mine project for many years, through its various incarnations as “Prosperity” and then “New Prosperity.”

Tsilhqot’ in Nation showed their disagreement through protests and bringing the case to the Federal Government which granted two injunctions against the company. On March 22nd, 2019, around 100 people gathered in front of the courthouse in downtown Vancouver to show support for the Tŝilhqot’in Nation.

“What I call it is genocide. You know with our history that’s what happened and today is no different – the genocide is still here,” said Chief Francis Leceese of the Tl’esqox First Nation when he addressed the gathering.

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Additional sources:

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Join us to celebrate BC Mining Resisters of the Year at the GALA OF RESISTANCE on Wednesday, May 1st in Vancouver, BC, unceded Coast Salish Territories.

This entry was posted in BC Mining Resisters Award, Community Resistance, Conflict and Repression, Environment and Health, Local and Indigenous Rights, Property and Livelihoods, Social Costs, Private Profit, Taseko Mines Ltd., Topics & Issues, Uncategorized. Bookmark the permalink.

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