This week's post in the series Enough 101 provides a brief background on Somalia’s new president, Hassan Sheikh Mohamud, as well as an overview of the challenges he will face in his new role. Read More »
Last week, leaders of the Sudan People’s Liberation Movement-North, or SPLM-N, arrived in Washington to meet with U.S. State Department officials and discuss U.S. engagement in the unfolding humanitarian crisis, as well as the ongoing peace talks with the government of Sudan. This is the first time the three leaders, SPLM-N Chairman Malik Agar, SPLM-N Chief of Staff and Deputy Chairman Abdel Aziz al-Hilu, and Secretary General Yasir Arman, have travelled together to the U.S. Read More »
Madison, WI– On Friday, September 21, the Conflict-Free Campus Initiative, or CFCI, at UW-Madison will host a kickoff event introducing how students can get involved with promoting conflict-free technology on campus in order to stop the trade of conflict minerals funding armed groups in eastern Congo. The Conflict-Free Campus Initiative is a movement that has spread to more than 100 campuses across the nation, and has led 12 schools so far to pass resolutions giving preference to conflict-free electronics products.
The event will feature unique campus and national speakers including Raise Hope for Congo campaign manager and UW-Madison alum, JD Stier. Filmmaker Paul Freedman (Sand and Sorrow, Halfway Home) will film the event and document the journey of the student leaders as they launch the Conflict-Free Campus Initiative on Madison's campus, which will become a core story line for a comprehensive film about the conflict in Congo.
Who: Conflict-Free Campus Initiative at UW-Madison, a new student-led group advocating for the university administration to pass a conflict-free resolution
What: Conflict-Free Campus Initiative Kickoff
Where: Beefeaters Room in the Memorial Union, 800 Langdon St., Madison, WI, 53706
When: Friday, September 21, 2012 from 6:30PM – 7:30 PM, CST
Why: Armed groups in eastern Congo earn hundreds of millions of dollars every year from the sale of conflict minerals—gold, tin, tantalum and tungsten. In order to control the mines, these armed groups use systematic violence and rape as a way to intimidate local communities. The ongoing conflict in eastern Congo has claimed more than five million lives, and still continues today.
As purchasers of electronics products, U.S. consumers have a powerful role to play in helping to prevent this deadly trade. Collectively, students can work together to create a demand for responsible sourcing of minerals from Congo. With more than 40,000 students enrolled, UW-Madison has significant purchasing power that can be used to pressure electronics companies into creating conflict-free products and responsibly sourcing minerals from the Congo.
The Conflict-Free Campus Initiative draws on the power of student leadership and activism to bring about peace in Congo. It is a project of the Enough Project 's Raise Hope for Congo campaign and STAND.
Continued pressure from citizen activists has finally started to crack Nintendo—the company that ranked dead last in the Enough Project’s 2012 company rankings on conflict minerals report released last month. Nevertheless, much more is needed to convince the world’s largest video-game console maker to move beyond issuing public statements and take meaningful action to clean up its supply chain. Read More »
WASHINGTON – For more than a year, the government of Sudan has targeted its own civilian populations and denied humanitarian access into Blue Nile and South Kordofan states, causing a humanitarian crisis comparable to that of Darfur less than a decade ago. It is time for the international community to act under the responsibility to protect, or R2P, doctrine and ensure aid delivery to Sudanese civilians with or without the government’s permission, argues a new Enough Project report.
The U.N. estimates that nearly 700,000 civilians are internally displaced or severely affected by the conflicts in South Kordofan and Blue Nile, and an additional quarter of a million people have fled the two states crossing the border into South Sudan or Ethiopia.
The international community has tried to ensure the delivery of aid into these areas through various diplomatic efforts, but to no avail. Most recently in August, the government of Sudan signed a memorandum of understanding, or MOU, with the “Tripartite Partners”—U.N., African Union, and League of Arab States—providing for the development and implementation of an action plan for humanitarian aid delivery throughout the two states. Over a month after the MOU’s conclusion, there is still no international aid reaching civilians in SPLM-N-controlled areas of South Kordofan and Blue Nile.
"The course of events over the past year makes clear that the international community's diplomatic efforts to negotiate with the government of Sudan for unhindered humanitarian access throughout the two states will not result in the delivery of aid,” said Jennifer Christian, author of the report and Enough Project policy analyst. “Under the responsibility to protect doctrine, the international community now has an obligation to ensure international humanitarian aid reaches civilians throughout South Kordofan and Blue Nile by whatever means necessary. Discussions should begin immediately over a comprehensive plan to deliver international, cross-border humanitarian assistance throughout the two states without the permission of the government of Sudan."
The report argues that under R2P doctrine, the burden to protect individuals within the state of Sudan has shifted to the international community. Because Sudan has failed to respond to diplomatic efforts, the international community may take collective measures under Chapter VII of the U.N. Charter. The Enough Project is not calling for military intervention, but rather for the successful delivery of international humanitarian aid to starving Sudanese civilians.
“The government of Sudan is brazenly denying its own people access to humanitarian aid,” said John Bradshaw, Enough Project Executive Director. “If the responsibility to protect doctrine is to have any meaning, the international community has to step up in a situation like this and ensure the delivery of humanitarian assistance throughout Blue Nile and South Kordofan by whatever means possible.”
Enough is a project of the Center for American Progress to end genocide and crimes against humanity. Founded in 2007, the Enough Project focuses on crises in Sudan, eastern Congo, and areas of Africa affected by the Lord’s Resistance Army. Enough’s strategy papers and briefings provide sharp field analysis and targeted policy recommendations based on a“3P” crisis response strategy: promoting durable peace, providing civilian protection, and punishing perpetrators of atrocities. Enough works with concerned citizens, advocates, and policy makers to prevent, mitigate, and resolve these crises. For more information, please visit www.enoughproject.org.
After enduring 45 days of detainment, beatings, torture, a trial in Sudanese court, and two arrests, Rudwan Dawod is free and back with his family in the United States. And although Dawod’s nightmare is finally over, many other political prisoners and human rights activists in Sudan still remain in custody. Read More »
On August 27, Ohio University’s Bobcats for a Conflict-free Campus claimed a victory two years in the making, becoming the 12th U.S. school to pledge a commitment to giving preference to conflict-free electronics products. Student leaders Ellie Hamrick and Jack Spicer wrote this guest blog post about strategies they used to advocate for the university to take a stand. Read More »