Home > Corruption, Human rights, Land, mining, Papua New Guinea > When will Rio Tinto Face Justice for its Crimes on Bougainville?

When will Rio Tinto Face Justice for its Crimes on Bougainville?

The Bougainville Truth Initiative

Its that time of year again, where Rio Tinto subsidiary Bougainville Copper Limited (BCL) celebrates its impunity from prosecution by declaring its resolve to re-enter Bougainville and scoop up what’s left of the mineral deposit they were forced to leave, when landowners closed their environmentally catastrophic operation.

In BCL’s 2013 annual report, published last week, the company’s Chairman gloats about escaping civil liability in the US courts on jurisdictional grounds.

“The action”, the Chairman argues, “which sought to invite a foreign court to decide on local PNG matters, in the company’s view sent a negative message about PNG and Bougainville and has not been helpful in attracting investors”.

If investors are deterred by the prospect of being found liable for gross human rights abuses they have helped author, perhaps these are not the type of investors PNG should be courting!

BCL has also been given moral support from the Autonomous Bougainville Government’s Australian legal advisor – recently revealed to have been paid $270,000 – K680,000 in Bougainville aid money – who went on the record to claim “credible evidence is yet to emerge” proving the allegations against Rio Tinto made in the United States.

Despite sophisticated efforts to deny and deceive landowning communities for a second time, the gravity of BCL’s actions are well known on the ground.

Below are some examples of why communities are fighting BCL’s return.

Anyone as disgusted as we are by this evidence can join the international campaign to bring Rio Tinto to justice for its deplorable actions on Bougainville: http://www.jubileeaustralia.org/2013/campaigns/notonmywatch/bougainville

BCL’s Managing Director Declares Support for PNGDF Offensives 

In this meeting with PNG Prime Minister, RJC – Robert Cornelius, BCL’s Managing Director – applauds security force offensive operations, and even identifies civilian targets to ‘apprehend’. Not involved in military operations?

BCL Supports Military Operations image

 BCL Provides Logistic Support for Military Operations

PNGDF officer, and acclaimed author, Yauka Liria, recounts the wide-ranging support BCL lent the security forces.

Declaration of Yauka Aluambo Liria p3Declaration of Yauka Aluambo Liria p4Declaration of Yauka Aluambo Liria p5Declaration of Yauka Aluambo Liria p6Declaration of Yauka Aluambo Liria p7Source: ‘Declaration of Yauka Aluambo Liria’, Alexis Holyweek Sarei, et el.,v Rio Tinto, plc. et al., Case No. 00-11695 MMM AIJx, United States District Court – Central District of California, Western Division, 2001.

  1. April 7, 2014 at 9:00 am

    RJC – Robert Cornelius, BCL’s Managing Director – says offensive forces should continue? Offensive forces like “mortared villages”, “rape”, “executed civilians”??? Is Robert still alive? I’m very interested to know where he is right now…

  2. Truth Hurts
    April 9, 2014 at 2:15 am

    As long as these articles get out only to the middle class, a movement will never develop to ensure that the Rio Tinto criminals are held accountable. The only hope is to educate university students extensively and broadly of this issue. If no one is going to do that or in a position to do it, expect this issue to sink like a bottom just like all the rest. Middle class people will never take the risk necessary to fight for justice. We may say beautiful things in our comments on the blogs but we won’t actually do anything that creates a true movement. Even Lucas Kiap, at the end of the day, won’t risk his job in the ways that are necessary to truly fight corruption. Blog owners, consider where you stand in the targeted education of the university students, because an accurate assessment of that will allow you to determine what impact the blog itself will ever have in bringing about change.

  3. April 12, 2014 at 6:50 am

    There is a film which documents the War during the Blockade the and effects on the People and their lifestyles, hiding deep in Jungle to avoid the “patrol boats, helicopters and Care centres”.

    To understand Bougainville and the people and processes in War; – Watch this film which has won many Awards around the Globe and is lucky available via iTunes in most Countries Global.

    help spread the work of independent media and film makers and ensure you friends and family get a copy.




  4. ToPam
    April 14, 2014 at 9:02 am

    Why are we allowing such ignorant transnational companies like Rio Tinto to abuse human rights and cause environmental catastrophe for their own gains? I reckon we had had enough of this bullshit from the developed countries, whom have controlled our economy with little attention to the people of the country and our environment. Just try putting yourself in their country and run havoc, they will hang you. They play unfair justice to us and enjoy all the benefits they reap from our resources.

    I believe justice MUST be done to these people, thus a lesson is well taught.

  1. May 20, 2014 at 3:22 pm

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