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In Pics | Miners in Chile strike at copper giant Codelco

Workers at Chilean state-owned mining giant Codelco, the world's largest copper producer, launched a major strike on June 22 to protest the closure of a smelter over environmental issues, though the government downplayed the impact on operations.

June 23, 2022 / 11:32 AM IST
Workers at Chilean state-owned mining giant Codelco, the world's largest copper producer, launched a major strike on June 22 to protest the closure of a smelter over environmental issues, though the government downplayed the impact on operations. (Image: Reuters)
Workers at Chilean state-owned mining giant Codelco, the world's largest copper producer, launched a major strike on June 22 to protest the closure of a smelter over environmental issues, though the government downplayed the impact on operations. (Image: Reuters)
The Federation of Copper Workers (FTC), an umbrella group of Codelco's unions, said 50,000 workers were expected to strike, including staff and contractors after the Ventanas smelter was shuttered despite calls for investment to keep it open. (Image: Reuters)
The Federation of Copper Workers (FTC), an umbrella group of Codelco's unions, said 50,000 workers were expected to strike, including staff and contractors after the Ventanas smelter was shuttered despite calls for investment to keep it open. (Image: Reuters)
The government and the company, however, moved quickly to dispel concerns over an impact to operations. Andre Sougarret, Codelco's interim chief executive, said there has been "some discontinuity" regarding operations, but the company was able to take steps to resume them. (Image: Reuters)
The government and the company, however, moved quickly to dispel concerns over an impact to operations. Andre Sougarret, Codelco's interim chief executive, said there has been "some discontinuity" regarding operations, but the company was able to take steps to resume them. (Image: Reuters)
Later in the day, the FTC said protest leaders had been detained by police forces while protesting outside of the company's El Teniente mine. (Image: Reuters)
Later in the day, the FTC said protest leaders had been detained by police forces while protesting outside of the company's El Teniente mine. (Image: Reuters)
Codelco's board of directors approved the closure of the Ventanas smelter last week after it had been suspended for maintenance after dozens in the region fell ill. The decision was later backed by Chilean President Gabriel Boric. The facility also operates a copper refinery, which will not be affected by the measure. (Image: Reuters)
Codelco's board of directors approved the closure of the Ventanas smelter last week after it had been suspended for maintenance after dozens in the region fell ill. The decision was later backed by Chilean President Gabriel Boric. The facility also operates a copper refinery, which will not be affected by the measure. (Image: Reuters)
Workers had warned last week they would strike if investments to upgrade the facility were not approved and insisted on June 21 the company should upgrade the smelter. (Image: Reuters)
Workers had warned last week they would strike if investments to upgrade the facility were not approved and insisted on June 21 the company should upgrade the smelter. (Image: Reuters)
The area the smelter is located in is saturated with industrial operations that environmental activists have described as a "sacrifice zone" due to pollution incidents. (Image: Reuters)
The area the smelter is located in is saturated with industrial operations that environmental activists have described as a "sacrifice zone" due to pollution incidents. (Image: Reuters)
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