London bullion market drops bid to block U.K. trial over allegations against Barrick mine – by Geoffrey York (Globe and Mail – June 17, 2024)

London’s bullion market association is abandoning a jurisdictional challenge to a lawsuit by Tanzanian claimants, setting the stage for a British trial into allegations that the association is wrongly giving human-rights clearance to gold products from Barrick Gold Corp.’s controversial North Mara mine.

The lawsuit was filed in London in 2022 by relatives of two Tanzanian men allegedly killed by security forces at the North Mara gold mine, but the jurisdictional argument had delayed the trial for nearly a year.

The London Bullion Market Association (LBMA), which oversees the world’s largest gold market with an estimated US$230-billion in weekly trading, has certified Barrick’s gold from North Mara as “responsibly sourced.”

Last August, the LBMA submitted arguments to the London court that the lawsuit should be heard in Tanzania. But on Monday, just days before a scheduled hearing into the issue, it disclosed that it had dropped the bid.

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