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Just weeks before elections, the action We want a cyanide-free vote! brings to the attention of the general public the imminent dangers that threaten the environment in Romania, as well as the duplicity and lies of the Government, of Romanian politicians,.

In order to warn about these dangers, thousands of MindBomb posters have been lining the streets of towns and villages in Romania, since the night of October 30th 2012.Among them are : Arad, Abrud, Alba-Iulia, Baia Mare, Bucuresti, Brasov, Bacau, Bistrita, Braila, Campeni, Constanta, Cluj, Craiova, Dej, Deva, Focsani, Huedin, Iasi, Ludus, Medgidia, Medias, Oradea, Ploiesti, Pitesti, Ramnicu Valcea, Resita, Rosia Montana, Sibiu, Suceava, Targu Mures, Targoviste, Timisoara, Turda, Satu Mare, Valea Ariesului.

 The post-1989 Romanian society has rarely seen its citizens engaging, bravely and tenaciously, into a fight against injustice. Rosia Montana represents a prominent exception. The campaign for the protection and defense of the environment, of the cultural heritage and of human rights in Rosia Montana has propelled the name of this village prominently into the consciousness of a whole nation.

But there is more to this campaign! The Save Rosia Montana campaign has made the public aware of two other important matters that concern all citizens of Romania: the use of cyanide in mining and the self-servinginterests of a political class supposed to look after the public’ interests.

In the last 12 years, Rosia Montana has been an issue the presidents, governments, MPs and local authorities, irrespective of their political affiliation have had to grapple. All of them, without any exception, either ignored the matter, becoming an accomplice to the mining companies; or aggressively lobbied for those companies, who intend to use cyanide to mine for gold. In spite of the ecological disaster at Baia Mare, in spite of constant opposition from the general public, political parties have continued to back a cyanide-based extraction process in a private project which would only bring destruction to Rosia Montana and to the Apuseni Mountains. The lack of interest and the incompentece are now unparalleled, with the Ministry of Environment in the Ponta Government learning from the media that an environmental licence had been granted to a new cyanide-base mine in Certej, Hunedoara County. Meanwhile, 13 other mines are planned in Transylvania and are in line to receive the requisite licenses from state authorities.

Intending to use Rosia Montana as an electoral card, Victor Ponta has stated he is against cyanide mining ahead of the local elections. Now, however, Victoria Palace is silent. This silence is as complicit as Traian Băsescu’s aggressive lobby for cyanide mining. Meanwhile, the leaders of PNL (the National Liberal Party) and PPDD (the Popular Party Dan Diaconescu) are openly supporting cyanide mining. PDL (the Liberal Democrat Party) and UDMR (The Democratic Union of Hungarians in Romania), on the other hand, seem intimidated by of the strong opposition of ordinary Romanians to cyanide mining which came to a head in January-February 2012. They are therefore, at this point, avoiding to discuss this problem altogether.

It is high time for a simple, honest answer from the Romanian Government! This answer can no longer be ambiguous; it will have to be either YES or NO! All responsible citizens of Romania believe that the answer can only be NO – and the politicians should listen to the voices of the people whose votes they are courting.

We have only one message for all political parties: it is time to own up to your responsibility! We are watching you – no electoral promise will be forgotten, no pro-cyanide and pro-destruction discourse will be forgiven, no negotiation with the mining companies, no matter how closely-guarded, will remain undisclosed! Cyanide-based gold mines, massive deforestation, dubious privatisations, shale gas fracking and irresponsible construction of hydroelectric power stations are only some of the problems on which we expect a clear and firm attitude. If you do not take a strong stand on this, we will!

Your deadline for coming clean is 9 December,the night of the elections.

Petition addressed to Victor Ponta Government: www.rosiamontana.net

For further information: contact@mindbomb.ro

facebook.com/MindBombProject

The MindBomb Project was initiated in 2002 by a group of artists, architects, journalists and writers, being the first to use art as a means of protest. The group introduced the independent socio-political poster in contemporary Romanian culture with the purpose of debunking the dominant discourse of politicians, mass-media and the advertising industry.

The main purpose of these actions is to transform the public space into a free space for dialogue and debate on the most urgent problems of contemporary Romanian society, through the use of art as a means for social change.

 There are five poster designs in this campaign:

1. Off with your mask!

After Băsescu’s lobby, here comes Ponta’s duplicity.

Publicly, Victor Ponta poses as an environmentalist while secretly negotiating with mining companies.

A man is worth more than the gold that he wears. A country as well.

2. Transylvania, a minefield. Romania is next.

Small steps, big disasters.

The authorities have given their approval for the use of cyanide in Certej. Another 20 more big mining projects are in line for development. Massive deforestation and irresponsible construction of hydroelectric power stations are in the pipeline. Shale gas fracking is on the way.

A man is worth more than the gold that he wears. A country as well.

3. Political leaders come and go, cyanide is indelible

Your democratic role is not limited to voting. Always keep an eye on them; not only once every four years.

A man is worth more than the gold that he wears. A country as wel

4. All for gold, cyanide for all

Behind party logos, fleeting coalitions and media scandals, political leaders look after their own interests.

We demand that political parties unambiguously state their position on cyanide mining. How we cast our votes hinges on their stance.

A man is worth more than the gold that he wears. A country as well.

5. High treason has a price in gold.

3 presidents, 8 prime ministers, hundreds of MPs and local authorities have acted in the best interest of a private company, instead of protecting your property rights, the environment and our cultural heritage.

We demand that political parties unambiguously state their position on cyanide mining. How we cast our vote hinges on their stance.

A man is worth more than the gold that he wears. A country as well.

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03/10/2012 2770 views

October 3rd, 2012, Rosia Montana – This morning ten environmental activists chained themselves to Victoria Palace gate demanding for the Government’s immediate  action to stop cyanide-based mining projects in Romania. The protest comes after the regional authorities issued the environmental permit for the Certej mine. Messages like “Cyanide rules in Ponta’s Administration”, “Cyanide-free Certej”, „Romania doesn’t taste cyanide” were displayed in front of the institution.

The Save Rosia Montana Campaign welcomes the protestars demands and considers that they should become mandatory for the Romanian authorities when evaluating any mining activity that aims to use cyanide.

The Protestars Demands for the Romanian Government

1. Ceasing forthright the authorization and approval procedures for mining projects until adopting all legislative measures and neccessary regulations ensuring: the prevention of any negative impact of cyanide use in mining industry on the population’s health and eco-systems; the assumption by all mining companies of all financial obligations against prejudices on environment and for environmental rehabilitation after closing the exploration and exploitation mining activities; the prevention of any negative impact of the mining activities on areas with archaelogically potential or the ones housing archaeological sites and historical monuments of local, national and universal importance; the prevention of any negative impact of mining activties on the integrity and environmental factors of the protected natural areas of local, national and European interest; the prevention of any breaking of citizens’ rights to property and private life and caused by mining activities;

2. Declassifying the information under the “state secret” or “activity secret” status and regarding conducting large-scale gold exploration and exploitation mining activities on Romania’s territory;

3. Ensuring the legal and institutional framework to allow public participation and consultation at all stages when decisions regarding authorizing large scale gold extraction activities, including assigning exploration and exploitation mining licenses, are taken;

4. Forthright assuming all state’s obligations to rehabilitate the environment and to economically revivify the areas affected by state conducted mining activities.

“I chose this type of protest due to the recent decision of the Romanian authorities to issue an environmental permit for cyanide gold mining in Certej. We believe that by issuing this   certificate, the Romanian Government gives a positive signal to other companies that wish to use cyanide in mining operations in Romania. I want a Cyanide Free Romania, without the Rosia Montana project, without the Certej or Rovina or Baita-Craciunesti projects,” said Andrei Mocanu, one of the activists.

For photos please visit:
http://www.facebook.com/media/set/?set=a.475248375841374.112287.464603156905896&type=1

For more information please contact Stefania Simion, mobile: 0040741137266, email: stefania@ngo.ro.

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