Greeks protest in Athens against gold mining investment

2013-03-12 21:39:47 GMT2013-03-13 05:39:47(Beijing Time)  Xinhua English

ATHENS, March 12 (Xinhua) -- Greek citizens took to the streets of Athens on Tuesday to protest against a gold mining investment in northern Greece.

Nearly 1,500 demonstrators marched to the parliament, shouting slogans against the project run by Canadian company Eldorado Gold, claiming that it will damage the local environment.

"No to gold destruction," read banners waved by protesters on Syntagma square.

The 1-billion-euro worth Skouries project has divided locals at the Halkidiki peninsula ever since the government gave the green light to Eldorado's Greek subsidiary to start digging about a year ago.

Over the past few months locals who reject the investment at the Skouries gold mine supported by activists across Greece, have culminated their reactions.

A few weeks ago a group of hooded persons stormed the site, injuring two guards, and damaged vehicles and equipment.

On the other hand, supporters of the mining project welcome the investment, arguing that it creates more than a thousand much needed job positions, as recession- hit Greece suffers from high unemployment rates.

The government which seeks to attract foreign investments nationwide to boost growth and exit the debt crisis has stressed that investments in Greece will be safeguarded.

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