A United Front Against Gold Mining: A Climate Justice and Peace Caravan From Turkey to Greece 

By Ecehan Balta and Nikos Anastasiadis

In a groundbreaking initiative, activists from both Greece and Turkey have come together to fight for the closure of gold mines in both countries. This collaborative effort has taken the form of a caravan from Turkey to Thessaloniki, aiming to manifest our opposition to the extraction of gold from the earth, specifically targeting the operations of multinational companies like Canadian Eldorado Gold and others, which have been active in both countries.

The driving force behind this movement is a collective refusal to accept the ecological devastation wrought upon nature and biodiversity in the pursuit of profit under the logic of capitalism. The caravan represents a diverse group of individuals united in their stand against the extraction of gold.  

This movement against extraction has witnessed lots of gains as well as setbacks in regions such as the Kaz Mountains, Bergama and Halkidiki. Activists are no strangers to the confrontations with these companies, having engaged in persistent struggles against gold mining.

The journey to Thessaloniki is symbolic, representing the first step in a broader anti-gold mining movement across the Balkans. The activists are resolute in their commitment to raising their voices against the destructive consequences of gold mining, emphasizing the interconnectedness of their struggle. This united front aims to transcend borders, emphasizing a shared responsibility to protect the ecosystems and the livelihoods of humans and various species affected by such extractive practices.

The message is clear: Regardless of location, these advocates pledge to consistently and collectively amplify their opposition to gold mining. The intent is to create a resilient, unyielding chorus that cannot be silenced, ensuring that the detrimental impacts of gold extraction on the environment and communities are brought to the forefront of public awareness. The journey from Turkey to Thessaloniki serves as a powerful testament to the strength of cross-border collaboration in the face of environmental challenges posed by the gold mining industry.

Climate Justice and Peace Caravan will be in Thessaloniki on December 2nd.

The program is as follows (you can find details here):

December 2nd, Saturday, 18:00 – Public meeting on successful anti-mining struggles in Romania and Turkey.

December 3rd, Sunday – Visit to the village of Megali Panagia near the Eldorado Skouries open-pit mine and meet with the Struggle Committee of the village.

December 4th, Monday, Afternoon – Discussing and exchanging experiences on movements in our respective countries, the issue of war and the future of the Kazma Bırak’ Campaign.

The Kazma Bırak Greek and Turkish Coordinations, and the Climate Justice Coalition of Turkey, the umbrella organization for 70 ecological groups, call on everyone to join the call for climate justice and peace- against gold mining. 

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