Conflict Minerals

The Dark Side of Darfur's Gold Rush

Darfur Gold cover

Darfur is suffering its worst humanitarian crisis in years. Since the beginning of 2013, over 200,000 people have been displaced by what the government of Sudan dismisses as “inter-communal” violence. Ten years after the first reports of genocide trickled out of Darfur, an eerie echo of the past is sweeping across the region. The government of Sudan would like the world to believe that Darfur is plagued by intractable inter-tribal hatreds that inevitably lead to violent destabilizing conflict. But in a new report, “Darfur's Gold Rush: State-Sponsored Atrocities 10 Years After the Genocide,” Enough Project Senior Advisor Omer Ismail and I challenge that descriptive framework.  Our research shows that government-armed Abbala militias’ recent power play to displace the Beni Hussein people and thereby gain control North Darfur’s gold mines is not the product of inter-tribal rivalries. Instead, the Abbala offensive must be understood as a continuation of Khartoum’s campaign of state-sponsored atrocity and plunder in the region.  Read More »

Conflict-Free in Canada

Gold traders weigh gold at mines on small scales, but miners earn very little fr

The conflict-free movement is gaining momentum worldwide, with the newest development happening in Canada.  In March 2013, New Democrat Foreign Affairs Critic Paul Dewar introduced a comprehensive conflict-free mineral bill to the Canadian Parliament.  Bill C-486 requires companies to regularly report how they obtain their supply of minerals such as gold, tin, tungsten, and tantalum from Central Africa, particularly Congo.  Read More »

Politico Op-ed: Amid Congo's horror, courage and hope

Robin Wright in eastern Congo, July 2011

I learned about the conflict in Congo because Javier Bardem was under the weather. Javier was supposed to join John Prendergast, co-founder of the Enough Project, at a screening of "The Greatest Silence," a film showcasing the use of rape as a weapon of war by militias in Congo, but he was too sick to attend.   Read More »

Brown, Dartmouth, and Yale Release Joint Statement on Conflict Minerals

Annie Callaway, Guest Blogger

Not only do universities educate students on issues of social justice, but they also serve as venues for students to organize around these issues and generate substantive change in society. Today, student leaders at Brown, Dartmouth, and Yale are seizing their opportunity to stimulate change by releasing a joint statement calling for responsible investment policies in relation to conflict minerals sourced from eastern Congo. Brown, Dartmouth, and Yale all participate in the Conflict-Free Campus Initiative, or CFCI, a network of more than 150 campuses worldwide, in this rising call for action.  Read More »

John Prendergast Testifies for Congo at the Senate Foreign Relations Subcommittee on African Affairs

John Prendergast

On Tuesday, April 16, John Prendergast, Co-founder the Enough Project, testified before the Senate Foreign Relations Subcommittee on African Affairs on the conflict in eastern Democratic Republic of Congo.
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Doing Well – and Doing Good

Dr. Ellen J. Kennedy

Guest blogger Ellen J. Kennedy, Ph.D., is the Founder and Executive Director of World Without Genocide at William Mitchell College of Law.  Read More »

Wall Street Journal Highlights Congo’s Conflict Gold Trade: U.S. Should Sanction Smugglers

Congolese miners

This morning the Wall Street Journal published an exposé on the conflict gold trade from eastern Congo, which is worth an estimated $285-400 million per year. The article details the lucrative trade in conflict gold as it is transported from mines in eastern Congo to smugglers in Uganda and Burundi and then to jewelers and dealers in Dubai and India. As the piece highlights, conflict gold is an increasingly important issue for jewelers and the gold industry, as there now exists a “shadowy chain of smuggled gold that stretches from the conflict zones of the Democratic Republic of the Congo to the markets of Dubai and jewelry shops around the world.”  Read More »

Policy Alert: New U.N. brigade in Congo is an opportunity

 MONUSCO deploys troops in Bunagana to secure populations

The new peace enforcement brigade approved by the UN Security Council on March 28, 2013 to operate under the United Nations Organization Stabilization Mission for the Democratic Republic of Congo, or MONUSCO, presents an opportunity to significantly reduce the strength of illegal armed groups if paired with special forces training, a robust defections program , and a comprehensive peace process led by new U.N. Envoy Mary Robinson.   Read More »

CNN Op-ed: Congo's "Terminator" Surrenders, What Next for Peace?

Ntaganda during his first appearance before judges of the ICC.

On March 18, a Congolese warlord known as Bosco "the Terminator" Ntaganda surrendered to the U.S. Embassy in Rwanda.   Read More »

5 Stories You Might Have Missed This Week

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

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