We received words to the effect that Romanians are not supporting the development of GABRIEL RESOURCESs Rosia Montana gold mine, despite what we wrote last week based on information from the company. Radhika Sarin, international campaign co-ordinator at Earthworks, wrote:
The article Gabriel goes forward on Rosia Montana (March 18) gives the false impression that the Romanian public supports the Rosia Montana gold mine project. In fact, a January 2007 opinion poll conducted by a Deputy Chamber of the Romanian Parliament found that over 96% of Romanians oppose the mine proposal.
It is also inaccurate to say that Romanian NGOs overwhelmingly support Gabriel. Also in January, 57 Romanian NGOs signed a public statement opposing Gabriel’s proposal to develop the project, citing concerns about cultural, environmental, human rights, and archaeological impacts.
The prestigious Romanian Academy, the country’s highest scientific body, has also stated that the gold mine proposal is not in the public interest and the collateral negative effects as well as the risks involved are not justified.
It is because of the efforts of the Romanian public and civil society that the Rosia Montana project has come under international scrutiny. Gabriel may try to paint a different picture with its public relations campaigns, but the truth is that opposition to the mine is strong and organized.
Earthworks (www.EarthworksAction.org) is dedicated to protecting communities and the environment from the destructive impacts of mineral development. It is based in Washington, D.C.