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GJAE Trails Dominican President,
Demands Cancellation of DR-CAFTA
and Barrick Mining Project
On Friday, September 24th, GJAE activist Adam Weissman trailed Dominican President Leonel Fernandez for almost five hours.
The day began with Fernandez's talk at the Council of the Americas. GJAE was on hand to flyer attendees of the event and passersby, warning that Barrick intends to steal over a billion dollars from the Domincan people while polluting their environment. GJAE also called on Fernandez tor repeal the Domincan Republic-Central America Free Trade Agreement (DR-CAFTA) to ensure that his country would not be extorted in the manner Pacific Rim is extorting El Salvador. Responses were mixed -- a surprising number entering the event expressed support for the message, while others, unsurprisingly, responded with derision and condescencion. Dominicans workers passing the event were angry to learn of Barrick's plans to rob their country, and were all too familiar with the ugly history of outside forces robbing the nation of its wealth. Fernandez heard an earful upon entering the event and again upon his departure. Secret service agents and NYPD intel diplomatic detail detectives were out if full force keeping GJAE at a distance from the President and his entourage, but noto the President heard and saw the message nonetheless.
After leaving the Council of the Americas, the President and his entourage crossed the street and entered the Council on Foreign Relations. Adam waited outside for Fernandez to depart, again urging him to cancel CAFTA and the mining project as he left the building and entered his car.
That would have been the end, but Fernandez and his cavalcade hit bumper to bumper Park Avenue traffic -- allowing Adam to pace Fernandez's car for ten blocks, standing flush with his window flush with his window and continuing to loudly urge him to kick get Barrick and the CAFTA-DR exploitation out of his country. Occasionally the car would manage to speed up, but Adam would catch up by the time it stopped moving a block later. The President was aware of the added member of his entourage and waved at Adam a number of times. This continued for about 10 blocks in achingly slow traffic until traffic finally cleared up a bit. But for a long while, Fernandez was forced to hear the message of the Dominican people who have been demanding that Barrick get out of their country and want no part of a trade agreement designed to allow US corporations to continue their economic hegemony over Latin America.