Sudan: Vigils Continue As South Kordofan Gold Mining Persists

16 September 2019

Talodi / Kadeer — Protests by residents of the localities of Talodi and Kadeer in South Kordofan are still ongoing against the gold exploration companies in the state, despite an order by the acting governor (wali) for an immediate stop to all gold mining activities in the state on Wednesday.

The youth of South Kordofan in Khartoum have appealed to the people from the state to a vigil before the Cabinet scheduled for tomorrow to oppose mining in the Nuba Mountains.

Khalid Mohamed told Radio Dabanga that the civil disobedience and sit-ins in Talodi and El Leri against the gold companies are still ongoing.

He said that schools in the area were closed on Sunday in solidarity with the civil disobedience.

Ahmed Mukhtar, head of the National Committee for Environmental Protection, told Radio Dabanga on Friday that the wali's order obliged the concerned authorities to stop the activities of all mining companies operating in South Kordofan.

Last week, the authorities arrested officials of the International Mining Group in the area of Jagrur in El Tadamon. The mining company allegedly buried internationally prohibited toxic substances near the company's headquarters.

In September, Rashad, Kadeer, and Talodi localities almost daily witnessed mass protests and sit-ins against the use of toxic substances in gold mining.

South Kordofan environmentalists reported the death of a large number of livestock and birds in Rashad and El Tadamon in end July, following the decision of the acting governor to resume mining in the state.

Toxins

Environmentalists have been warning of the health and environmental hazards of the use of toxic mercury and cyanide to extract gold from ore for years.

In January 2018, a medical team led by the Health Minister of gold-rich South Kordofan investigated the increase in miscarriages, the birth of deformed children, and cases of kidney failure in El Tadamon.

The Sudan Democracy First Group highlighted the human and environmental costs of traditional gold mining in the region in a report published in November 2018,.

Protests against gold extraction plants in several parts of Sudan increased over recent years. People in Northern State, North Kordofan, and North Darfur as well took to the streets in fear for their health.

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