LA PAZ, Bolivia (AP) — Quechua Indians in Bolivia's southern highlands have seized three more local employees of a Canadian mining company in a dispute over what may be one of the South America's biggest silver deposits.
That brings to five the number of employees of South American Silver detained by people from the Quechua community of Mallku Khota in the past week. Company spokesman Gonzalo Gutierrez said the three were taken by force Monday from a mining camp.
Saying they are worried about environmental damage, the Indians are demanding the company halt exploration of what the company calls one of the world's largest undeveloped deposits of silver, indium and gallium. South American Silver says it includes 140 million ounces of silver.
The government says it has dispatched 100 additional police to the area.