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Congo - Suffering of the People - Retrospect ...

Congo - Suffering of the People

Posted by Raphaydeena on

Congo - Suffering of the People

In Congo’s sun-scorched and dusty south, thousands of miners scour underground tunnels hunting for cobalt. Many of them work by hand. They don’t use power tools, they don’t wear face masks and no gloves. They are known as creuseurs — French for diggers

DRC has $24 trillion worth of Valuable Minerals/ Coltan, Gold, Diamonds, Tin, Uranium. This equals combined GDP of Europe & US. $6 million resources leave Congo every day, but for Congolese people there is only misery & death. Western states back militias who extract minerals for them

Today over 40 armed rebel groups (domestic and foreign) operate in Congo

But tragedy is not new for Congo:

1871 to 1960 – Congo was owned by King Leopard of Belgium, he enslaved population – rape/torture/killing was common – 10million were killed

1960 -1961 – Patrice Lumumba, a pan-Africanist, led the nation to independence. With Belgium support Katanga & Kasai provinces seceded from Congo. Lumumba asked US for help, US refused, Lumumba turned to Russian help. US behind coup by Army Chief Mobutu - Lumumba was executed. Civil war follows till 1965

1965 to 1997 – Mobutu authoritarian regime, large scale plundering of the Congo’s natural resources, Mobutu amasses $4billion in Swiss banks, corruption & human rights violations common. Bush calls him “one of our most valued friends”

1994 Rwandan Genocide - 800,000 killed in Rwandan, 2million flee to eastern Congo

1997 First Congo War - Rwanda & Uganda invaded east Congo, help opp. leader Kabila gain power

2001 Second Congo War – Kabila shot dead, son Joseph Kabila takes power, 9 African countries enter the war

Today major rebels & their backers are FDLR(Rwanda), ADF (Uganda), FNL(Burundi), LRA(Uganda) and Mai-Mai(local)

UN report: ‘this massive looting (of minerals) was aided by US-backed governments in Uganda, Rwanda, & DRC & Western multinational corporations that used (and still use) militias as a conduit to gain access to those resources’

US supplied Mobutu $300 million weapons & $100 million military training. When Kabila took power, the Clinton admin quickly offered same to him. US armed 8 of 9 governments directly involved in war in DRC since Kabila’s coup

Amnesty International presented a report ‘Democratic Republic of Congo: Illegal Arms Exports Fuelling Killings, Mass Rape and Torture’ in 2005. The report revealed:

DRC govt. having arms-for-diamonds agreements with companies in the Czech Republic, Israel & Ukraine;
2004 arms trafficking network linking the DRC and Liberia involving international cargo companies;
The transfer of over 200 tons of arms to a pro-government armed group in north Kivu by a local company using aircraft from a South African firm supplying UN peacekeepers in 2003

The country is kept poor by Western countries that are taking the resources out of it and returning arms, poverty and death to the people