Guns, Power & politics research
New Reports & Activist Guide Series
Mining is accompanied by human rights abuses, environmental degradation, displacement, loss of land and livelihoods, community fragmentation and conflicts. It is a story of Guns, Power and Politics where violence plays out at every point along the mining chain.
This new research and activist guide series focuses on the mining sectors in Mozambique, Sierra Leone and Zimbabwe – laying bare the architecture of absent and compromised laws and policies and the misuse of state power and resources. This guarantees vast corporate profit through ‘development’ centered on the large-scale exploitation of natural resources.
The violence explored in this series is widely defined, and includes the destruction of the environment, the extreme exploitation of human labour (both paid and unpaid), and the forced removals and impacts on livelihoods and well-being of communities, which arise from this extractivist model of development.
Importantly, the research shows how resisting communities and artisanal miners encounter the brutality of the military and private security of corporations. In this process, women miners and community members experience sexualised violence, in the form of rape, gang rape and sexual harassment, with the aim of instilling fear and ‘keeping them in their place.’
This research series challenges us to understand violence as inborn to this dominant extractivist development system, as explored in the three countries. The system cannot be reformed to guarantee safety for women, their communities, and mineworkers. Instead, we are challenged to re-imagine development to guarantee a decent life for the majority of humanity, as well as the sustainability of ecosystems and the planet, upon which all life depends.
WoMin African Alliance together with the Centre for Natural Resource Governance (CNRG) in Zimbabwe, Justiça Ambiental (JA!) in Mozambique, and Network Movement for Justice and Development (NMJD) and Women and Mining (WOME) in Sierra Leone are proud to present this cutting-edge series.