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St. Elias Mines Ltd. announces exploration and development plans for Tesoro Project in Peru

Friday, Dec 21, 2012

VANCOUVER, British Columbia , Dec. 20, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- St. Elias Mines Ltd. (SLI - TSX:V) today announced further exploration and development plans for its wholly owned Tesoro Gold Project in southern Peru. St. Elias also urged shareholders to vote the WHITE proxy for the Company's nominees to the Board of Directors.

"After careful review, we have adopted a two-part strategy to advance our Tesoro project over 18 to 24 months," said Lori McClenahan, President and CEO of St. Elias Mines. "In order to carry out the strategy we will need additional capital. We are focused on completing our financing and hope to do so during early 2013, if market conditions permit."

One part of the Tesoro strategy involves exploration to explore for new gold-bearing material. St. Elias has established a number of attractive targets for a 3,000 metre to 5,000 metre diamond drilling campaign.

The other part of the strategy involves development focused on more than 20 waste rock dumps left behind by prior mining activity. St. Elias intends to sample and test the dumps and prepare a National Instrument 43-101 resource estimate. St. Elias proposes to follow up with a prefeasibility study to determine whether gold could be profitably recovered from the dumps, providing cash to support additional exploration.

Vote the WHITE proxy for an experienced board

St. Elias continues to encourage shareholders to vote the WHITE proxy to elect the five St. Elias nominees. The Annual Special and General Meeting (the "Meeting") of St. Elias shareholders is scheduled for December 27, 2012 at 11 am Vancouver time. Shareholders who wish to vote the WHITE proxy for the St. Elias nominees have only one more day to vote prior to the proxy voting deadline of Friday, December 21, 2012 at 11:00 A.M. (Vancouver time).

St. Elias also continues to believe that a circular issued by dissidents Gilby Len Hastman and Darcy Kim Hastman is deficient and that the dissident nominees lack relevant experience. The dissidents still have not provided any details of how they intend to advance St. Elias' portfolio of high potential properties, nor have they proposed a management team to operate St. Elias. Not one of the remaining dissidents has experience in mineral exploration or corporate finance, and not one has previously served as a director of any publicly-traded company.

About The Tesoro Gold Project

The Tesoro gold project is 100 per cent owned by the company with no underlying royalties.  The property covers approximately 4,415 hectares and is part of the prolific 300-kilometre-by-30-kilometre Nazca-Ocona gold belt that parallels the Pacific Coast of southwestern Peru. Further information on the background and history of the Tesoro Gold project, as well as St. Elias' exploration activities to date are available on the Company's website, www.steliasmines.com.

The technical contents of this news release have been verified by George Sivertz, P. Geo, a Canadian geologist and a part-time resident of Peru.  Mr. Sivertz is a Qualified Person as defined in National Instrument 43-101 (Standards of Disclosure for Mineral Projects).

About St. Elias

St. Elias is a gold-focused exploration company led by an experienced management team and active in Peru and British Columbia. St Elias' properties have high potential and are located in two of the most prolific mining regions of the world. For additional information on St. Elias and its projects, please visit us at www.steliasmines.com or call Danny Aaron at 1-888-895-5522 (toll free US and Canada).

SOURCE St. Elias Mines Ltd.

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