Friday, June 24, 2016

Women Human Rights Defenders and Villagers Oppose Coal Mining and Demand Climate Justice ?

Statement: Women Human Rights Defenders and Villagers Oppose Coal Mining and Demand Climate Justice

by apwldadmin · June 16, 2016

Solidarity Statement

This statement originates from the solidarity activity held at Ban Haeng, Lampang on June 9, 2016 organized by Asia Pacific Forum on Women, Law and Development (APWLD), Protection International (PI) and Asia Indigenous Peoples Pact (AIPP) which was attended by more than 100 villagers, the community-based Rak Ban Heng organisation and human rights defenders from nine (9) countries[1].

Photo credit: Alexandra Salmon-Lefranc Gennai

WE, the undersigned members of Asia Pacific civil society, representing different constituencies, movements and organisations, express our solidarity with the Ban Haeng community opposing the coal mine in Tambon Ban Haeng, Ngao District, Lampang and condemn the threats and harassment committed against the villagers and community organisers in the area.

Since 2010, the community members of Ban Haeng have been vocal in their opposition to the proposed coal mining project in their area. In the absence of due process and genuine community consultation, the people living and farming the area have organized into the Rak Ban Heng Conservation Group. The group aims to ensure the conservation of the forests, natural resources, the environment, community and traditional culture and values. The community is steadfast in opposing the lignite mining because of the destructive nature of the project which is expected to have a huge impact on the health and livelihood of the community.

Despite community resistance, a mining concession was granted to Green Yellow Co. Ltd. in August 2015 by the Ministry of Industry. On October 22, 2015, 386 villagers filed a complaint at the Chiang Mai Administrative Court, requesting the court to revoke the concession permit and to issue a temporary injunction against mining operations in the village. As the exploratory concession expires in August 2016, the tensions between the corporation and the State on the one hand and the community on the other continue to rise.

Various forms of intimidation, including close physical surveillance by unidentified men, harassment from military officers, threats of death and enforced disappearance have been made to Women Human Rights Defenders (WHRDs). Among the WHRDs who have experienced harassment is Waewrin Buangern who has pending criminal complaints against her but to date has not received sufficient assistance from the Thai Justice Fund[2] to pay for bail and legal fees.

This pattern of harassing environmental and women human rights defenders is not unique to Ban Haeng. In 2014, Southeast Asia was considered among the riskiest places to be a human rights activist, with 21 recorded killings in Thailand alone.[3] Last week, on World Environmental Day, three United Nations Special Rapporteurs highlighted the alarming trend of targeting environmental human rights defenders “as if they were enemies of the State”[4]. They urged states to meet their obligations to protect environmental rights, defenders and members of marginalized and vulnerable communities.[5]

The struggle in Ban Haeng contributes to global campaigns for climate justice, energy democracy and Development Justice. The solidarity activity held in Ban Haeng amplifies the call for a feminist fossil fuel free future – a future that empowers women; a future that paves the way for redistribution of power from the elite to the many; and a future that is free from dirty energies and dirty, exploitative economies.


Lignite is the dirtiest of all fossil fuels. It creates dirty, dangerous environments locally and emits high levels of carbon emissions. If we are to restrict global warming to 1.5 degrees above preindustrial levels (the target set in the Paris Agreement), 80% of fossil fuel reserves must stay underground[6]. As a result, no new fossil fuel power plants should be allowed while decentralised, locally-owned, clean and renewable energy projects should be promoted.

The event in Ban Haeng is part of the Women’s Global Call for Climate Justice[7] where women from every region in the world are demanding climate justice now!

In solidarity with the women leaders and the villagers of Ban Haeng, we support the call of the villagers and community-based organizations to live in peace in the land they have lived in for generations and to craft their own development agenda. The people of Ban Haeng should not be deprived of their right to their lands in order to accommodate a project which has negative impacts on their livelihood and the environment.
A.Gennai_Solidarity Action in Ban Haeng_2016-0190

Photo credit: Alexandra Salmon-Lefranc Gennai

We join the people of Ban Haeng in their efforts to protect the community’s livelihoods, local environment, and community rights to participation in public affairs. We stand with the villagers in denouncing a development agenda that is beneficial only to the elite and causes irreversible damage on the environment. We call on the Thai Government and local authorities to revoke the concession permit granted to Green Yellow Co. Ltd., to withdraw all charges against community leaders and to work with the community to achieve Development Justice.

Source: APWLD Website -


Hakimi Abdul Jabar said...


I copied your article & posted on one of the blog rolls of one of my websites. Linking it to your URL.

Anyway, talking about human rights, I must further add that the deliberate, intentional, criminal thefts & deprivations of my academic, non-academic, professional qualifications/documents and other personal & private properties are in direct contravention of Article 23(1) of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR)1948, i.e. the Prevention of the Right to Work & the Prevention of the Engagement of Active Employment, the Prevention of Free Choice of Employment etc., which further contravene the enshrined right to liberty & the freedom from all fgorms of slavery & servitude etc.

The right to work is the concept that people have a human right to work, or engage in productive employment, and may not be prevented from doing so. The right to work is enshrined in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and recognized in international human rights law and municipal laws.

Article 23.1 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights states:[1]

(1) Everyone has the right to work, to free choice of employment, to just and favourable conditions of work and to protection against unemployment.

— Universal Declaration of Human Rights, United Nations General Assembly

Hakimi Abdul Jabar said...

Mr. Charles Hector,

Despite lodging police reports & forwarding letters to the State DPP, against the principal offenders and their abettors and co-conspirators who were involved in the deliberate, intentional & criminal thefts & deprivations of my academic, non-academic, professional documents and other personal & private properties, which included a light green folder consisting of my SPM Cert., Law Degree, CLP Cert., Fair Order of Admission, Instrument of Admission, 2 Bank Passbooks, etc.), professional legal diary (both statutorily protected under s.126 Evidence Act 1950) [bogh of which were stolen in 2010], my Diploma in Law etc., actions nor prosecutions have not been taken against the criminal offenders and their abettors & conspirators nor have all my personal & private properties been returned as of date.

I have on my own effort & endeavour gotten a replacement law degree certificate from my alma mater university.

Kindly advise to next course of action.

Thank you very much.

Warmest regards,