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13/02/2015 13:00 (UTC)

COLOMBIA ILLEGAL MINING

COLOMBIA ILLEGAL MINING

Aereal view of a gold illegal mining located in the rural area of Santander de Quilichao, Cauca department, Colombia, 13 February 2015. Besides the security problems for actions of illegal armed groups and criminal gangs to get control of the area, indigenous leaders have promoted movilizations to stop illegal mining exploitation due to its negative environment impact. Illegal mining causes big environment problems for the use of mercury and other metals in its process, which also contaminates surrounding rivers; and also for river's divert practices, uncontrolled excavations and trees cutting. According to last figures of Colombian National Agency of Mining, around 83 % of precious metals are produced in illegal exploitations. In contrast of that, there is only 442 legal titles for gold and precious metals legal exploitation in the whole country. EFE/Christian Escobar Mora

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