March Against Uranium in Brzkov

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=> CZECH version of this article

The march against planned uranium mining on September 7, 2014 was attended by approximately 200 people with children, mostly locals, but some participants also arrived from surrounding villages and towns. The march was organized by the association "Our Future Without Uranium", which expresses disapproval of the Brzkov population with the government’s intention to restore the local mining uranium in the future, which would be contrary to The Raw Material Policy of the Czech Republic from 1999. During the day citizens could sign the petition by the civic association called "NO to Uranium Mining in the Highlands" (about 1200 signatures since July), which is addressed to the Prime Minister Sobotka.

After 2pm, march participants set off on their one-kilometer march towards the former mining grounds. The beginning and the end of the parade was decorated with two yellow excavators with banners: "We have faith, we have power, we do not want to dig a hole here" and "Liquidation of groundwater will not please us." (the original Czech text rhymed). Behind the first excavator there went two members of the association, who were dressed in chemical protective clothing and holding a banner: "ABOUT US, WITHOUT US, as in Munich." This motto showed disillusionment with the fact that residents of Brzkov and its neighbourhood, including municipalities, learn information about uranium mining indirectly from the media. Instead, they would prefer politicians to discuss and communicate things directly with them. The peaceful parade was secured by a police escort, to whom the event was reported duly in advance.

In hot sunny weather, all march participants were relieved when they reached the shade of the forest at the edge of a reclaimed mine site. There journalists from regional media (Czech Television), daily newspapers (Jihlava), Czech Press Agency and Citizen newspaper conducted additional interviews with other citizens carrying banners. This was followed by short encouraging speeches addressed to local citizens, the last of which was given by Marie Vencová, the member of the association, who also invited all to the opening of the photo exhibition "Faces of Uranium" with photographs by Václav Vašků, which takes place in Polná on September 24, 2014 at 3pm (and is co-organized by Calla). Then people marched the same route back to Brzkov, where they received refreshments in a form of BBQ sausages, that were prepared by the association, and bought beverages from a local restaurant.

Olga Kališová, Calla (September 10, 2014)