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The Conga Strategy

Yesterday’s post on the feeble attendance seen at the anti-Conga protest in Cajamarca fit right in with a theme we’ve covered for the last six weeks in The IKN Weekly. Back in IKN176, dated September 16th, this was written:
“Peru: Conga suddenly out of national headlines

In a country such as Peru, it’s what’s not being delivered to your TV
screens in the form of news that can be as interesting as what is and in the
last two weeks, the amount of polemic (false
or otherwise
) and headlines made by the Conga project and its protests has
dropped very significantly. This sudden drop in newsworthiness seems to be part
of the plan of the government to try and reduce the importance of the issue in
the public eye and coincides (though it’s
hardly a coincidence
) with utterances of the new cabinet chief Juan Jiménez
when he took the job that Conga shouldn’t be an obsession. It may be a case of
media bosses and editors getting an informal phone call, it may be that there’s
less actually happening around the Conga project, but it is significant that
your author had to search for the latest news stories of the massed protests in
the town of Bambamarca (11) with 100% adherence to the protests and marches,
schools and shops closed etc, then vows of local ‘Ronderos’ (rural activist groups) to maintain a permanent
24/7 vigilante party (12) made up of 1,000 people at the threatened lakes for
signs of construction activity. What we have heard instead from the media are
the news stories of development and growth in the mining industry in other
places, such as Cerro Verde (Arequipa) Toromocho (Lima/Junin), Quellaveco
(Moquegua) and others, all quite the charm offensive in fact and all indicative
of a  government that has decided to set
the agenda instead of reacting to somebody else’s….”

As they say round this way, “El que no llora no mama”

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