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Demonstration against Los Merinos Macro golf and hotel/housing project

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SEO - Ronda

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« on: January 29, 2007, 10:17 AM »
A plea for your help!

We are confronting a situation in Ronda that should never have arisen in a European country in the 21st century. It goes against the basic principles of a civilised and democratic state!

We appeal to everyone who cares about their democratic right to protest and who is concerned with the protection of the environment.

Please join the demonstration that will take place on Saturday February 10th at 12 o’clock starting at the top end of calle Espinel (also known as Calle La Bola) where the underground parking is being built. It will finish at the Parador.


Why is your participation necessary?

1) A campaign of intimidation is being pursued against anybody who opposes the mega development and golf course project of Los Merinos.

a) To date 51 people are being sued for participating in a march on the 5th November 2006, against the illegal closure of an important public footpath that runs through Los Merinos.
Those who handed out the fines did not even shrink from lying. One of the people being charged by the Guardia Civil for participating in the march and disturbing public order, was working in Malaga at the very time of the march on that fateful day.

b) Nine people, including three foreigners, who have campaigned against this massively damaging project, are being particularly targeted.

The campaigners received writs and denunciations, some more than 5 each. Private detectives are being employed, to spy out their lives and even the lives of their family members.
The accusations, invariably false, are gradually being dismissed by the courts, but those involved have been put under great strain and have had to pay the high legal costs of their defence. These people have been told that if they stop opposing this project the cases against them will be dropped.

All these writs, fines and denunciations appear to originate from the promoters of Los Merinos.
We believe that they are discrediting themselves through their behaviour. We do not understand how they can hope, by using these scandalous methods, to attract investors.

For further reading:
The Daily Telegraph, The Sunday Times, The Independent and the Guardian have all published articles about Los Merinos and the legal cases against Lord Kilmarnock and others instigated by the promoters. See for example:
http://www.telegraph.co.uk/global/main.jhtml?xml=/global/2007/01

2) We believe that the Los Merinos project does not meet the legal requirements.

We are not on our own: The Junta of Andalusia is challenging the approval, by the Town Hall of Ronda, of this project in the Andalusian High Court (TSJA).

3) Water is our most precious commodity

Two and a half golf courses will use about as much water as a city of about 40000 inhabitants. Even emptying the river through Ronda as they plan to do will not yield enough water. They will need to take the rest of the water out of the aquifers.
The dried out river and the heavy drain on the aquifers will contribute to the desertification of the Serrania

4) The developers have closed the international footpath GR-7

The GR7, which runs from Tarifa to Athens is blocked by a wall that was built across the path. Neither the town hall nor any other government institution has done anything about this.

5) We need sustainable employment models

We agree with the findings of the Stern report that this type of development will ultimately lead to job LOSSES, whatever the short-term economic benefits may be.

Another model is needed which does not depend on massive water use, for instance one based on responsible tourism and wine growing.

The king, Don Juan Carlos, himself used his Christmas message to appeal for the defence of the future of the environment and to speak out against speculative and unsustainable urban developments. Let us follow him!


Therefore we ask you to

* Pass on this information to your family and friends or to any media to which you may have access.

* If you are connected to or affiliated to any group or association that agrees with our principles please ask that they contact us as soon as possible so that we can include them in the list of supporters for the demonstration which has been organised by Silvema Serrania de Ronda.

* Come to the demonstration and try to bring as many people as possible.



This demonstration is supported by:

* Ecologistas en Accion Silvema Serrania de Ronda, the organizers
* Plataforma Cueven Defensa del Agua,
* La Plataforma Arriateor la Defensa del Agua,
* SEO-M?ga,
* SEO-Serrania de Ronda,
* Grupo de Trabajo del Valle del Genal,
* Plataforma por el desarrollo sostenible de la Serrania de Ronda-?SOS!,
* los Verdes de Andalusia,
* IU de Ronda,
* Asociaciro Derechos humanos de Andalucia  and
* FRAA, the Foreign Residents Association of Andalusia.


For further information contact:
jonateg@telefonica.net (Spanish)
or
petra.wiegmink@almarsad.com (English).
« Last Edit: November 24, 2007, 15:55 PM by Wildside »

Offline nick

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« Reply #1 on: February 06, 2007, 23:01 PM »
Good luck

By the way, Telegrapgh link didn't seem to work
Nick
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« Reply #2 on: February 08, 2007, 12:50 PM »
And so the countdown begins! Big day on Saturday. We are hoping everyone behaves themselves and we can make a real difference to the progress of the Golf Course and the writs issued against the protestors of November. Several organisations have responded wonderfully well to our circulars and requests for help and bodies. So wish us well for Saturday.

Offline Clive

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« Reply #3 on: February 10, 2007, 23:42 PM »
hello

A pleasant surprise to day to see a massive crowd peacefully marching through the main street of Ronda In protest to the disgraceful plan for yet another golf course and hotel complex.

Around a thousand people we figured.

I have some pretty good photos if anyone wants them I'll email them.Or with Nicks permission post them here.

Heres a link that explains the situation

http://theolivepress.es/content/view/381/42/

Clive
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Offline nick

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« Reply #4 on: February 11, 2007, 00:19 AM »
Hi Clive,
Glad to here it went well. Situation sounds absoluely scandalous. Did it get on the news?

Don't need my permission, it's a free forum, but don't make 'em too big if you upload photos (go to additional options) - optionally you can insert them from a web address (second icon on left) in which case they can be as big as you want as I'm not hosting them

Nick
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Offline Clive

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« Reply #5 on: February 12, 2007, 17:44 PM »
Hola,

yes it got on the news.

Here's three photos that kind of sum it up for me.

The one of the green banners saying "Ronda si Golf si" and the banners saying "El futuro de Ronda lo deciidimos los Rondeños were placed all over and everywhere by the town council / chamber of commerce who are, of course in favour of the plan.

Then there is of course the people of Ronda making it quite clear about what they want (or don't want) for the future.

And last but not least the "confusion" of the two posters in a Ronda shop. On the left a flyer advertising a photography exhibition of the beautiful countryside and on the right the shopkeeper has placed the "Ronda Si" flag to say he is in favour of the golf course and related hotel / housing plan.

Clive
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Offline Clive

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« Reply #6 on: February 23, 2007, 18:59 PM »
Hola,

I just found out that there will be another march tomorrow in Ronda with regards to the subject of this thread.

This time though it is the people who are in favour of the golf course on the theme that it will sustain the future success of Ronda.

Unfortunately I can't go as I have other plans but i would like to have seen a comparison of the amount of people attending. There seems to be a lot of people in favour of this horrible scheme.

So If any one is in The Ronda area tomorrow it would be interesting to hear about how it went.

Clive
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Offline Technopat

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« Reply #7 on: February 24, 2007, 11:44 AM »
Clive,
Sorry to hear of your problems down there - you have my moral support, for what it is - and that of many Spaniards also, as I'm sure you are well aware.
I know it's a bit late in the day, and I see that you have the backing of many wildlife conservation groups who know more about these things, but it occurred to me that you could put it in the hands of SEPRONA, the Guardia Civil unit devoted to wildlife issues, etc.
I've been told that they are increasingly proud of their autonomy and professionalism, and are not above going against local politicians or even their own corps members if need be.
Elsewhere on this forum there is an interesting (well, heart-breaking, really) article about their recent strike in Gredos. I'll try to find the link in case you haven't come across it already.
The relatively new and active Fiscal del Medio Ambiente, or whatever, is also another parallel via to consider, if you haven't already done so.
Good luck - and ¡Ánimo!
Technopat
« Last Edit: August 29, 2007, 23:43 PM by Technopat »
Technopat's disclaimer: If this posting seems over the top and/or gets your goat (Sp. anyone?), please accept my apologies and don't take it personally - it's just my instinctive tendency to put my foot in it whenever/wherever possible. See also:
http://www.iberianatureforum.com/index.php/topic,266

Offline Technopat

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« Reply #8 on: February 24, 2007, 11:48 AM »
The article is in this topic category, so I s'pose you've seen it, but here's the link anyway:
http://www.iberianatureforum.com/index.php?topic=34.0
Regards,
Technopat
Technopat's disclaimer: If this posting seems over the top and/or gets your goat (Sp. anyone?), please accept my apologies and don't take it personally - it's just my instinctive tendency to put my foot in it whenever/wherever possible. See also:
http://www.iberianatureforum.com/index.php/topic,266

Offline Clive

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« Reply #9 on: May 23, 2007, 16:01 PM »
Hola,

The issue of the golf course complex just outside of Ronda in Andalucia gets even more complicated.

Latest news is here at the olive press web site

http://theolivepress.es/content/view/491/42/

Also at the olive press is an article about the same company blocking the GR7 footpath...

http://theolivepress.es/content/view/492/42/

Sorry to outlink the info but I don't think the olive press would like it if I copied and pasted their articles....

Clive
« Last Edit: August 12, 2007, 19:26 PM by Wildside »
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Offline Technopat

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« Reply #10 on: May 24, 2007, 00:09 AM »
Greetings Clive,
Thanx for the links.
So IU gets the expat vote?  8)

Regs.
Technopat
Technopat's disclaimer: If this posting seems over the top and/or gets your goat (Sp. anyone?), please accept my apologies and don't take it personally - it's just my instinctive tendency to put my foot in it whenever/wherever possible. See also:
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Offline Sue

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« Reply #11 on: October 19, 2007, 00:17 AM »
Latest news from Olive Press regarding the "transplanting" of oak trees

Excellent quote from our very own SEOronda Peter and a word or two from me as well

Clive

http://www.theolivepress.es/2007/10/16/a-fairway-to-treat-nature/
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Offline Technopat

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« Reply #12 on: October 19, 2007, 14:51 PM »
Can anyone explain in words of one syllable why this doesn't make the national news? Are the lobbies really that powerful?* What are the implications of us sending copies of this and myriad of similar stories to national and international bodies? How can we best get certain messages across (i.e. without being accused of sensationalism, interfering with domestic matters, etc.)?
Aren't there any public-spirited lobbyists/marketers/judges (who are legally obliged to interfere at any instance of law-breaking) out there who are willing to donate their expertise and time to doing something about this and many other instances of public authorities - at best - shirking their responsibilities.

*As I think I once mentioned, the director of communication for an important organisation once confessed to me that his sole function, rather than generating positive news, was to maintain excellent relationships with the national media in order to prevent anything bad being written/said about his organisation.

Technopat
Technopat's disclaimer: If this posting seems over the top and/or gets your goat (Sp. anyone?), please accept my apologies and don't take it personally - it's just my instinctive tendency to put my foot in it whenever/wherever possible. See also:
http://www.iberianatureforum.com/index.php/topic,266

Offline Clive

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« Reply #13 on: October 19, 2007, 19:32 PM »
Technopat, Words of one syllable.... hmmm that's a hard one... Actually Impossible...

But basically, I have the feeling that the "majority" really do not care about our world....

The majority of the Ronda area want the golf course
the majority of the Ronda area want the new road that gets them to the coast in 22 minutes instead of 45
The Majority want air conditioning and another petrol station and and and... The list goes on and on and on

This is a democracy where the "majority" get what they want and the powers that be are PART of the "majority"

It is a fact that I am part of a "minority" so I have to face the fact that most of the things I want or do not want will be irrelevant

To use the famous phrase (answers on a postcard please!!!).....

"The needs of the many outweigh the needs of the few".....

That said, I will never stop talking (preaching?) to people about better ways to live our lives.....About respect to ourselves and to the planet that supports us!

Clive



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Offline Clive

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« Reply #14 on: October 19, 2007, 19:36 PM »
Oh and by the way, the reason I said in my comment in the Olive Press "The judge needs sacking" is because he stated that the work on the golf course could go ahead because if the project got stopped in the future all the work done up to that point could be reversed.....

Well! where are they going to get 500, 100 year old oak trees from to put it back the way it was? Maybe dig them up from some other place????

Sorry but the abject stupidity makes me want to scream!

Clive
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Offline lisa

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« Reply #15 on: October 19, 2007, 22:30 PM »
Chin up Clive, one day the minority will be the majority. It'll be too late but it will happen. There, that's cheered you up hasn't it  >:(
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Offline Technopat

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« Reply #16 on: October 19, 2007, 23:44 PM »
Greetings Clive,
Re. your
Quote
"The needs of the many outweigh the needs of the few".....
I am perfectly willing to accept that as a precept if what we're talking about is needs: Water, grain, education, TLC...
But when we're talking about some stupid whim which has dire consequences for the rest of the world, or what's worse, someone's greed and "need" to make a fast buck at the expense of others, just screaming ain't enough. Yeah, sure, it's a great way of letting off steam and therefore good for the ol' blood pressure, but I'm reaching the stage - and age - where I need action and I "need" to know of other people's ideas and experiences as to how to attack the problem* creatively.

*Advantage of sharing life with a psychologist is that you get to learn very early on that problems don't actually exist - just figments of people's imagination, ruts we get stuck in. Situations for which one has not yet found a solution. Said solution might not necessarily be to everyone's liking, nor even optimum ... But I digress.

As-I've-said-before-an'-I'll-say-it-again-Nature-will-be-around-a-long-time-after-we've-done-our-utmost-to-destroy-it regs.,
Technopat
Technopat's disclaimer: If this posting seems over the top and/or gets your goat (Sp. anyone?), please accept my apologies and don't take it personally - it's just my instinctive tendency to put my foot in it whenever/wherever possible. See also:
http://www.iberianatureforum.com/index.php/topic,266

Offline Clive

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« Reply #17 on: October 26, 2007, 10:58 AM »
A new round of demonstrations is starting up. Today, people against the merino project will be attending Malaga being bussed in from the affected areas, Unfortunately I only just got the email about it now! quarter to 11 on the day of the demo... Sigh!

There is a small picture of the work "that can be put back" at the bottom.....

Clive


> Plataformas vecinales y ecologistas de toda la provincia efectuarán
> mañana en Málaga la enésima protesta pública contra la construcción
> del macroproyecto urbanístico de Merinos Norte
>
> El alcalde de Ronda dice que le importa "un pimiento" que el juzgado
> le investigue a instancias de la Fiscalía por presunto "fraude de ley"
> en este caso.
>
> 25/10/07. Medio Ambiente. Semana clave en el caso Los Merinos.
>
> La
> Fiscalía de Medio Ambiente ha solicitado al Juzgado nº 1 de Ronda que
> investigue si el alcalde de esta ciudad, Antonio María Marín Lara
> (PA), ha cometido un presunto delito contra la ordenación del
> territorio o contra los recursos naturales y el Medio Ambiente en la
> tramitación del macroproyecto urbanístico de Merinos Norte. Además,
> las plataformas vecinales y ecologistas de toda la provincia organizan
> mañana una nueva protesta pública exigiendo la paralización inmediata
> de las obras que se desarrollan en dichos terrenos, situados en la
> zona de transición de la Reserva de la Biosfera de la Sierra de las Nieves.
>
> EL traslado de las diligencias previas al juzgado número 1 se produce
> después de que el pasado 26 de febrero, el coordinador provincial de
> IU, José Antonio Castro, y el concejal de la coalición en Ronda,
> Rafael Ruiz, presentarán a la Fiscalía documentación que apuntaba a
> que el proceder del regidor rondeño podría incurrir en varios delitos.
>
> "Muestra como el alcalde rondeño aprobó actuaciones urbanísticas que
> no estaban permitidas o que carecían de los preceptivos informes de
> las administraciones públicas. El alcalde ha intentado obviar la
> prohibición de Cuenca Mediterránea del suministro de agua a este
> proyecto", apuntó ayer Castro en un comunicado.
>
> ANTONIO María Marín Lara, por su parte, dice que todo este asunto le
> importa "un pimiento" y que "forma parte de la demencia política del
> señor Antonio Romero", (parlamentario de IU), según se recoge de sus
> declaraciones al diario Málaga Hoy.
>
> POR otra parte, mañana se efectuará una nueva protesta pública contra
> la construcción del macroproyecto de Merinos Norte. Será a las 11:00
> horas frente a la delegación de Obras Públicas de la Junta de
> Andalucía en Málaga, en la plaza de san Juan de la Cruz donde se
> concentrará representantes de la plataforma Cueveña en Defensa del
> Agua, organización que convoca el acto y que ha recibido el apoyo de
> otros grupos vecinales y ecologistas como Antequera Habitables,
> Plataforma Pro manantiales del valle de Abdalajís, Ecologistas en
> Acción, Plataforma en Defensa de la Serranía de Ronda, Grupo de
> Trabajo del Valle del Genal y la Plataforma en Defensa de Río Grande.
>
> UNA acción que se produce en el primer aniversario de la que ha sido
> hasta el momento la primera y única huelga general de la historia de
> la democracia española en la que un pueblo entero, Cuevas del Becerro,
> se paralizó al completo en protesta por un proyecto urbanístico ligado
> al golf que supone una amenaza a los acuíferos que abastecen el municipio.
>
> MIENTRAS tanto, los movimientos de tierra, la apertura de nuevos
> viales y los transplantes de encinas siguen en marcha en la finca de
> Merinos como se aprecia en las imágenes aéreas que ilustran esta
> noticia y que fueron tomadas la semana pasada.
>
> LAS obras de urbanización en la finca siguen en marcha en virtud de
> una resolución de la juez Asunción Vallecillo, titular del Juzgado de
> lo Contencioso Administrativo nº 1 de Málaga, que rechazó la petición
> de la Junta de Andalucía de suspensión cautelar al estimar que no se
> puede considerar como cierto, ni tan siquiera como probable, que "la
> ejecución del acto administrativo impugnado en el proceso conlleve el
> riesgo de que en el futuro haya de ser destruida riqueza en una
> entidad tal que merezca el calificativo de daño o perjuicio de imposible o de difícil reparación".
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Offline Clive

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« Reply #18 on: November 24, 2007, 15:59 PM »
Latest news and facts from SEO Birdlife... (in Spanish but fairly easy to read)

It is on the observador web site

http://www.airon60.com/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=1171&Itemid=67

I passed the Merinos project yesterday and the cutting up of roads has now been turned into mud and slime after the rains of the last week... You can imagine what dozens of heavy machines can accomplish in the mud....

I am becoming more confident that this project will not go the distance....

:)
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Offline lisa

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« Reply #19 on: November 24, 2007, 20:44 PM »
Makes the project look unthinkable doesn't it? My fingers are crossed for it.
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