Whose Police?

Barrick Gold faces UK High Court over alleged Tanzania gold-mine deaths

By David Whitehouse

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Posted on March 17, 2022 09:47

Barrick Gold Corp Chairman Thornton speaks during their annual general meeting for shareholders in Toronto © REUTERS/Mark Blinch
REUTERS/Mark Blinch

The UK High Court will today start to consider a case filed against a Barrick Gold subsidiary over allegations of unlawful killings and assaults at a mine in Tanzania between 2014 and 2019.

Ten Tanzanians filed the case in February 2020 against Barrick Tanzania Limited, which was previously called Acacia Mining. Barrick, which took over the operation of the North Mara Gold Mine in September 2019, denies any liability.

A Tanzanian government inquiry was told in 2016 that police had killed 65 people and injured 270 during clashes with villagers near the mine. The violence often resulted from villagers entering the site looking for rocks from which they could extract gold. Some villagers claimed that they were barred by police, while others were allowed access in return for bribes.

British human rights group Rights and Accountability in Development (RAID) argues that human-rights violations at the mine are still continuing. “Barrick’s board and investors should ensure an end to the mine’s relationship with the police and set up a truly credible and independent investigation

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