The citizens’ initiative “Healthy Mojkovac” wrote to the Swiss ambassador to Montenegro and Serbia, Urs Schmidt, in order to, as reported, address serious concerns regarding the proposed mining project that “threatens to destroy the environment and the well-being of the local community”.
“Tara Resources AG, the Swiss company that has taken over the concession contract for detailed geological exploration and exploitation of sulphide polymetallic ores, has expressed its intention to start mining activities in the area of the former mine ‘Brskovo’ near Mojkovac. The area under consideration covers almost 7,000 .000 square meters, significantly crossing into the protection zone of the Biogradska gora National Park.
Additionally, the proposed project does not address the presence of mercury (Hg) in the area, although it is recognized as a mercury mine in state geological studies. A study conducted by Tara Resources AG, and prepared by the Institute of Mining and Metallurgy Bor, is not harmonized with the Montenegrin legislation and lacks the basic elements of an objective approach to existing dangers,” the announcement states.
The civic initiative “Healthy Mojkovac”, they add, has submitted remarks and opinions on both documents related to the project, which were recently the subject of public discussion.
“However, their concerns increased after learning that Tara Resources AG is part of the newly founded Swiss-Montenegro Chamber of Commerce, an organization whose presentation was attended by His Excellency Ambassador Schmid. The civic initiative sent a letter directly to the Chamber of Commerce of Montenegro and received a response that the Chamber was not included in the project, that is, that the state institutions – the Montenegrin Chamber of Commerce, then potentially the Swiss Chamber of Commerce, are not connected to the newly established Swiss-Montenegrin Chamber of Commerce,” the statement reads.
Starting from the friendship between Switzerland and Montenegro, and “recognizing Switzerland’s reputation for responsibility, precision and commitment to human rights and environmental protection”, the Civic Initiative “Healthy Mojkovac” appealed to the Swiss ambassador to carefully consider the remarks addressed to them.
“Their great concern lies in the fact that a Swiss company is proposing a devastating project that seriously threatens the area between two national parks and the UNESCO-protected Tara River. The citizens of Mojkovac are outraged by these plans and have already launched a campaign to collect signatures to express their will against the opening of the mine and mining activities,” it added.
GI “Healthy Mojkovac” also said that, although the final decision on the opening of the mine rests in the hands of the Montenegrin government, they want to know whether Switzerland “would allow such devastation with outdated technology that is not acceptable even in African former colonies”.
“Also, the question arises as to whether Tara Resources AG is a credible representative of Switzerland and the Swiss Chamber of Commerce. The citizens of Mojkovac hope that His Excellency the Ambassador, recognizing their concern for a healthy life and preserving the environment, will recognize the importance of their appeal and help them achieve their rights,” the announcement concludes.
Source: Investing Montenegro