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UPDATE: ‘Water Is More Precious Than Gold’ tour in British Columbia

Vidalina speaking last night in Victoria. Photo by Grace Draper.

Vidalina speaking last night in Victoria. Photo by Grace Draper.

The Council of Canadians and the Blue Planet Project are helping with the ‘Water Is More Precious Than Gold’ speaking tour in support of the call by La Mesa for a ban on metallic mining in El Salvador. The tour is raising awareness in Canada because Vancouver-based Pacific Rim is pursuing a trade challenge against El Salvador so that it can proceed with its El Dorado gold and silver mine in the northern province of Cabañas.

The tour, which features Vidalina Morales de Gamez (in BC and Ontario) and Sandra Carolina Ascencio (in the Atlantic region), has now visited Kamloops, Vancouver and Victoria. This afternoon, there will be a public forum in Parksville (about 40 kilometres north of Nanaimo), and then it will be on to Ontario.

The tour began with some innovation in Kamlooops when Vidalina’s flight had scheduling difficulties and the talk needed to be done via Skype. That challenge overcome, her presentation and question & answer session went very well and local organizers report “everyone was pleased with the results”. In Vancouver, Vidalina was joined by Lolilta Chavez, a Maya-K’iche woman from the north-western highlands of Guatemala. And in Victoria, the audience for Vidalina’s powerful presentation included two Members of Parliament. A local organizer commented, “A grateful crowd thanked Vidalina and Nedjo (who translated for her). We learned that the 125 people who came out to this event had contributed over $800 towards the critical work of La Mesa”.

The tour is being organized in collaboration with KAIROS, MiningWatch Canada, the Maritimes-Guatemala Breaking the Silence Network, the United Church of Canada, SalvAide, and the Natural Resources Council of Maine. For a list of the tour stops (including in the United States), please see http://www.blueplanetproject.net/index.php/water-is-more-precious-than-gold-speaking-tour-coming-to-a-community-near-you/.