A person was killed and two were wounded in a demonstration in Kologi, South Kordofan, against the gold mining companies in the area on Sunday.
Hundreds of protesters burned the house of the commissioner of Kalogi and locality buildings in anger, rejecting the activities of the gold mining companies which they accuse of using the toxic chemical cyanide, which can contaminate the environment and harm humans, animals and nature.
Riot police shot and wounded three protesters, including a higher secondary school student. He was taken to Abu Jubeiha hospital for treatment where he succumbed to his injuries. He was buried yesterday.
The protest erupted after the Friday prayers when dozens of residents from El Tirtir and El Tadamon gathered for a vigil in front of the house of the locality commissioner. A delegation of the Sudanese Company for Mining held a symposium there at the time.
Ahmed Mukhtar, the secretary-general of the national environmental protection committee, told Radio Dabanga: “Their symposium was held to persuade residents to allow mining companies to operate in the area.”
He added that people from El Tirtir strongly refused this and started demonstrating, which prompted the delegation of the Sudanese Mining Company to immediately leave the locality.
State of Emergency
Last month the authorities in the state declared a State of Emergency. Sources in the area said that the curfew was imposed following the rejection by residents against the state's invitation to gold mining companies to operate in the area of Kologi. In particular the youth of Kologi protest the use of toxic materials in gold mining, and publicly expressed their fear for their health and the environment, a listener said.
Cyanidation, a technique for extracting gold from low-grade ore, is the most commonly used process for gold extraction. The process is controversial because of the highly toxic nature of cyanide.