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Gabriel Rises After Filing Arbitration Case Over Romanian Mine

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Gabriel Rises After Filing Arbitration Case Over Romanian Mine

Gabriel Resources Ltd., a Canadian gold-mine developer, rose after it escalated its dispute with Romania over its stalled Rosia Montana project by seeking international arbitration.

Gabriel increased 5.2 percent to 40.5 cents in Toronto. The shares have declined 56 percent in the past 12 months.

The company has spent more than a decade trying to build what would be Europe’s largest gold mine amid opposition by campaigners to the use of cyanide to extract the metal. It said Tuesday in a statement it has filed a request for arbitration at the World Bank’s international settlement arm after Romanian authorities “blocked and prevented implementation of the project without due process and without compensation.”

“In light of their apparent and disappointing unwillingness to engage at all, it has become the company’s sole recourse to commence international arbitration,” Chief Executive Officer Jonathan Henry said in the statement.

The company doesn’t have any further comments, Henry said Wednesday when reached by phone.

In 2013, Gabriel threatened to seek as much as $4 billion of damages should Romanian lawmakers vote to oppose its gold and silver project in the country. By the end of the year, Romanian lawmakers rejected legislation that would’ve helped Gabriel’s gold mine amid protests against it.

Romanian spokesman Corneliu Calota said the government “has fulfilled its obligations when it submitted the mining draft law to Parliament.” Officials haven’t received any notice yet from Gabriel or the World Bank’s arbitration body, Calota said by phone Wednesday.

The Rosia Montana project stalled after a series of protests in cities across the country in 2013 demanded Gabriel’s plan to be dropped. Local communities opposed the use of cyanide in Romania after the country suffered one of Europe’s worst environmental disasters in 2000 when cyanide-rich mine waste in northwestern Romania contaminated tributaries of the Tisza river and spread to the Danube.