Please note the following press release has been translated from Greenlandic to English. English is not the native tongue spoken in Greenland.
1. Februari 2016 Nuuk, Greenland.
16 August Association, hereby issues this press release, concerning the Greenland Mining Authority, who for more than eight years, have criminalized citizens and in all these years has maintained confiscation of citizens’ private property, in the form of Gemstones (Robijnen). However after a judicial review, the authorities have now concluded that they illegally confiscated Rubies should be returned to the rightful owners.
As constitutional rights have been violated and stakeholders through the media, for more than 8 jaar, has been hailed as criminals and Ruby smugglers, the union considers it as absolutely necessary to involve the media that have disseminated in this case, with countless articles in the press and through Radio / TV.
The Mining Agency continues to claim that there had been illegal activities carried out, without being able to identify which specific Articles of the law, have been violated.
The ruby conflict started back in August 2007, with false accusations from a foreign exploration company, who then got the Mining Directorate, to involve police in Greenland, without lawful authority.
It is precisely this kind of misinterpretation of the Mining Act and institutional racism by the Authority, which has contributed to the more than 8-year Greenland Ruby conflict which especially in the international media, has been written so much about.
Such gemstone conflicts have been very damaging for Greenland citizens and foreign companies opportunities, for the marketing of Greenland rubies and sapphires on the international free market. Our gemstones are far more desirable if they are conflict-free, ethical and ethnical correct extracted and processed.
De 16 August Association hereby requests the international media, to move on into this case by searching Access to the Inatsisartut Ombudsman Survey, judiciary conclusion, de (Kammeradvokaten) Chamber Attorney Statement in the case and also to search access into how much this case has cost taxpayers, at the Mining Authority’s work, use of legal counsel as the law firm Bech-Bruun in Aarhus and so forth.
De 16 August Association considers it as its main task, helping and advocating for restoring the lost fundamental rights of the population of Greenland in the transition from Home Rule to semi-autonomous Self Rule, since enormous value to our society is being lost, as there is NO major political interest in the population’s employment opportunities, in processing and international marketing of Greenland gemstones.
Greg Valerio MBE, ethische juwelier, activist and co-founder of Fair Jewelry Action said, ‘After 8 years of lies, deceit, racism, prejudice, stifling bureaucracy, false accusation, illegal confiscation of personal property by the State of Denmark, mining laws made by unqualified Danish technocrats, instigated by the neo-colonial Canadian Ruby mining company True North Gems, the Greenlandic and Inuit miners have finally been fully exonerated of any illegal activity. I welcome the return of illegally confiscated goods, however there is still institutional prejudice faced by Greenlandic miners. They are still prevented from selling historical stones, earning a livelihood from gemstone collecting and their income is capped at 100,000DK ($15,000) per annum. Economic discrimination is alive and well and sanctioned in law. This is not the end of the story, it is however a significant victory on the long road towards the establishment of the gemstone resources of Greenland benefit the people of the Greenland. Who would have thought that a 1/4 of North America is still a colony of a European country who believes it can sell the land out from under the local peoples feet’.
Institutional racism has along the way, been a major obstacle in the opportunities available in the gemstone trade in Greenland and the 16 August Association consider it a necessity that people’s rights in the future, be protected by a new Gemstone Act, without outdated terminology, volgens de vrije internationale sieraden industrie.
Vereniging '16 .August ‘.
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