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A National Gathering of the Next Generation of Human Rights Defenders
Here at Enough, we often swap emails with interesting articles and feature stories that we come across in our favorite publications and on our favorite websites. We wanted to share some of these stories with you as part of our effort to keep you up to date on what you need to know in the world of anti-genocide and crimes against humanity work.
The Independent ran an interesting update on Israeli billionaire Dan Gertler’s vast holdings in Congolese mining, following on a profile in Bloomberg Markets magazine (which we highlighted in 5 Stories last Friday). The Independent’s Jim Armitage reports:
Last week, the IMF stopped a $500m (£310m) loan to the Congo due to its concerns over the way Joseph Kabila's government had sold minerals to a company said to be controlled by Mr Gertler. A few days later, his biggest partner in the Congo, London Stock Exchange-listed mining company Eurasian Natural Resources Corporation (ENRC), severed its relationship with him.
Human Rights Watch published a slideshow of photographs from South Kordofan, Blue Nile, and the refugee camps to which civilians have fled amid indiscriminate bombardment by the Sudanese government. The images capture scenes from daily routines of civilians living in and around the conflict area and evidence of the ongoing attacks.
Photographer Brian Sokol represents the trials of the civilians fleeing violence in Sudan’s Blue Nile state by photographing refugees posing with whatever they consider to be the most valuable thing they brought with them on the journey. For one mother, the stove that enabled her to cook for her children on the challenging and long walk proved the most valuable possession. Ten-year-old Ahmed says he can’t imagine living without his pet monkey. The U.N. refugee agency presented the photographs in a slideshow.
Days before U.N. ambassador Susan Rice bowed out of contention for the next U.S. secretary of state, one of her senior deputies, Witney Schneidman, writes for Foreign Policy in defense of Rice’s track record on U.S.-Africa policy at a pivotal time in history. Schneidman writes:
…Rice worked with singular focus to persuade the administration and Congress that the United States had interests in Africa worth investing in. It was a fundamental break with prevailing Cold War attitudes toward the continent, and one that hints at the forward-looking mindset that Rice would bring to the job of secretary of state.
Somali rapper K’Naan offers a candid reflection on the pressures of trying to reach a broad American audience with music that stays true to his past in war-torn Somalia. The takeaway from the New York Times opinion piece is particularly surprising given that K’Naan released his newest album two months ago, of which he writes:
SO I had not made my Marley or my Dylan, or even my K’naan; I had made an album in which a few genuine songs are all but drowned out by the loud siren of ambition. Fatima had become Mary, and Mohamed, Adam.