The Death of Lake Izabal
In early 2017, a red slick appeared on Guatemala’s Lake Izabal, the country’s largest. Local Q’eqchi’ Mayan fishermen attributed the possible contamination to the activities of the Fenix Mine, an industrial project with a checkered past, including serious accusations of human rights abuses.
Protests were violently squashed by the National Police resulting in the death of fisherman Carlos Maaz and the criminalization of numerous local leaders and journalists. In July 2019, Guatemala’s Constitutional Court halted the project’s operations until a proper community consultation is carried out.
Published in Le Monde on June 21, 2019.