June 2011

Bring Guisma Home: Host a Support Sudan Home Gathering

“Don’t you just want to bring them home?” I’m often asked that when people see pictures and videos of me with children in the Darfuri refugee camps. I do bring them home with me, in so many ways. They are what keep me going every day in this often-depressing work. As any father would say, I love them all, but Guisma has a special place in my heart, and now you have a chance to Bring Guisma Home.  Read More »

Ohio School District Joins the Conflict-Free Movement for Peace in Congo

For over a year, students at the university level have been the leading voice in the movement for conflict-free products. Since Stanford University passed a proxy voting resolution in spring of 2010, four other universities, the most recent being the Ohio University Honors Tutorial College, have issued statements calling on electronics companies to clean up their supply chains, and over 50 schools across the nation are participating in the Conflict-Free Campus Initiative. Now high school students have joined the movement, using their power as individual consumers and collective communities to change the demand for conflict-free products and change the equation for peace in Congo.  Read More »

Waking the Sleeping Giant: Call on the U.S. to Lead the Charge to Certify Congo's Conflict Minerals

This post originally appeared on Care2.com:

Under Secretary of State, Robert Hormats, recently said the issue of conflict minerals in the Congo is “one of the greatest moral issues of our time … and one that requires bold, resolute, and moral action by the U.S.”  As citizens and consumers we have never been closer to helping reduce violence in eastern Congo. Now we need the Obama Administration to be a leader in the final charge.  Read More »

Rift in Kimberley Process Provides Lessons for Conflict Mineral Certification

A sharp divide over the resumption of diamond sales from Zimbabwe has left members of the Kimberley Process struggling to keep the process intact. Last Thursday following a week-long meeting, the Democratic Republic of Congo, or DRC, (the rotating chair of the Kimberley Process) announced that diamond exports from Zimbabwe would resume, leaving members grappling with fundamental questions about legitimacy, corruption, and credibility. At the heart of the issue is the debate over how, in the face of egregious humans rights abuses perpetrated by the Zimbabwean security apparatus, exports from the controversial Marange fields of Zimbabwe can resume, and how those exports would be monitored and overseen to ensure that human rights abuses do not continue. The Marange fields are considered one of Africa’s richest existing diamond deposits and for years have caused controversy because of reported abuses of Marange’s mining communities by Zimbabwean state authorities.  Read More »

Will China Step Up on Sudan?

Many human rights champions around the world have responded with anger at the news that China will be receiving Sudanese President Omar al-Bashir this week. The argument is that by hosting Bashir, a figure indicted for war crimes, crimes against humanity, and genocide, China only reinforces Bashir’s sense that there are no consequences for his brutal actions against his own people. President Hu Jintao and other top government officials will personally meet with Bashir during his visit.  Read More »

Enough Project, Woodrow Wilson Host Event on Conflict Mineral Certification

Representatives from government, industry, and civil society gathered at the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars last week to participate in an Enough Project-hosted panel on the issue of conflict mineral certification in the Democratic Republic of the Congo.  Read More »

Mapping with the South Sudan Community

Following the historic referendum in Southern Sudan, Google, The World Bank, UNOSAT, RCMRD and Satellite Sentinel are co-hosting an event in Nairobi, Kenya on June 30, 2011 to demonstrate the power of mapping and support the building of the world’s soon-to-be-newest independent nation on July 9, 2011. Without basic geospatial information, it is difficult for the government, civil society, development partners, and all stakeholders to evaluate the current needs, target their planning efforts, and mobilize proper resources. At times like these, it is critical to have good maps of roads, settlements, buildings and other services, with both local and official names.  Read More »

Congolese Cartoonist Tells Story of Congo Conflict

The conflict in eastern Congo may not seem obvious fodder for a cartoonist, but in his graphic novel Roza or the Courage to Choose Life Congolese artist Seraphin Kajibwami from Bukavu does a masterful job telling a powerful and uplifting story aimed at educating and inspiring youth about the many challenges that civilians – particularly women and girls such as Roza – face in eastern Congo.  Read More »

Field Dispatch: Congo Civil Society Engages on Conflict Minerals

In his latest dispatch from the field, the Enough Project’s Goma-based field researcher Fidel Bafilemba reports on a coalition of prominent Congolese civil society organizations working to address the linkage between natural resource exploitation and human rights abuses in the region. Their partnership is known as the Support Platform for Traceability, and Transparency in the Management of Natural Resources, or GATT-RN.  Read More »

5 Stories You Might Have Missed This Week

A weekly round-up of must-read stories, posted every Friday.  Read More »