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Miners in Europe and the former Soviet states – together we are a force

Dear colleagues, according to the EU decision underground coal mining is being closed down systematically throughout Europe in favour of environmentally damaging raw material extraction such as fracking. In Poland as well as in other countries in Eastern Europe, cold closures are being carried out by merging pits and thus further increasing the exploitation of the miners.

In Germany, production at the last two coal mines was stopped at the end of 2018 in order to close them down. After this had already taken place years ago in Belgium, France and Great Britain where the affected regions have been reduced to poorhouses the miners, their families and the population don’t want to accept that coal mining should be history and degenerate to an industrial monument for tourism. Today's Europe has been built into one of the strongest economic regions in the world through the hard work and the lives of hundreds of thousands of miners and their families. We neither accept the closure of mines nor the destruction of jobs!
In connection with the transition from internal combustion engines to electric drives, the hunt for lithium, cobalt and cobalt chloride required for electric batteries has reached a new level. The world resource market today is a focal point of the aggravated struggle of imperialist powers for maximum profits and power. Right now, the general tendency of the imperialist war preparation is getting more intense around so-called "energy security". We will not allow the struggle for raw materials to become once again the ember which might spark the flames of a new world war.
For the workers, the struggle for raw materials and minerals is leading to an enormous intensification of exploitation, wage cuts, dissolution of safety standards and miserable working conditions already today. At the same time, the destruction of the environment is being immensly aggravated, we also experience that in Poland, the Czech Republic, Slovenia, Greece and other Balkan countries. What is new is that, also in Europe, the EU imperialists want to penetrate into the deepest layers of rock and extract the rarest metals. First test drillings for rare earth elements (REE) have been financed with EU funds in Sweden. They hypocritically praise these new mining projects as ecologically sustainable. Ironically, this is what corporations say that are responsible for destroyed landscapes, the clearing of forests for open-cast mining or dumping toxic waste underground. The ones that are responsible for the imminent climate catastrophe due to the excessive burning of coal. Mining monopolies, along with their servant governments and in association with partly bribed union leaders, make believe that, unfortunately, saving the environment can only be done at the expense of jobs and that having both is not possible. We demand: jobs and environmental protection at the expense of profit!
We miners are unbeatable when we collaborate with the whole workers' movement as well as the women's, youth and environmental movement. The rulers know about the power of the miners' struggles. They have experienced them in England in the 1980s, in 1997 during the big miners’ strike in Germany and since this millennium by the struggles of the Spanish, Polish and currently the miners in Ukraine and Kazakhstan. That is why they want to split the miners' movement. We strongly oppose the emerging inflammatory voices of nationalist and racist movements that want to drive a wedge between the workers and the broad masses of the different countries. We are now taking a step forward and preparing a European Miners' Conference from 28/11 - 1/12/19 in Poland.
Our slogan is mutual support and solidarity with all miners' struggles in the world!
Join the conference and announce it in your companies, trade unions and organisations!