Enough Project Newsletter – August 12, 2009

Secretary of State Clinton Takes On Congo’s Sexual Violence and Conflict Minerals Trade

 

Yesterday Secretary of State Hillary Clinton visited Goma, the capital of the province of North Kivu in eastern Congo, the site of the deadliest war since World War II.  In a meeting with President Joseph Kabila, Secretary Clinton discussed the use of rape as a weapon of war and the toll that the war has taken on Congolese women.  Drawing attention to the problem of impunity, the Secretary says she “spoke at length with President Kabila about the steps needed to be taken to protect civilians.  We believe there should be no impunity for the sexual and gender based violence, and there must be arrests and punishment because that runs counter to peace.”  Secretary Clinton also emphasized the underlying roots of the ongoing conflict by addressing the issue of conflict minerals and the need to prevent profits from the mineral trade from continuing to fuel violence. 

Enough field researcher Olivia Caeymaex had the privilege of attending Secretary Clinton’s roundtable discussion on sexual violence in Goma.  Visit Enough Said to read her firsthand impressions of Secretary Clinton’s dedication and commitment to addressing the root causes of the conflict in Congo.

Enough’s commentary on the trip and the links between conflict minerals and the scourge of sexual violence in Congo was featured in the New York Times, Reuters, and on NPR.   A comprehensive list of conflict minerals-related resources is available here.

 

The urgent need to deal with the trade in conflict minerals was the subject of Enough’s latest op-ed, “The New Blood Diamonds.”  Read the Boston Globe piece by John Prendergast here.

Enough’s RAISE Hope for Congo campaign staff are just back from a field visit to eastern Congo.  Check out Campaign Manager Candice Knezevic’s blog posts highlighting the inspiring efforts of Congolese activists to end the violence in Congo.
 [Photo: Clinton at HEAL Africa clinic in Goma. AP]
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Special Envoy Stirs Sudan Controversy

Special Envoy to Sudan Major General Scott Gration’s controversial remarks before a Senate Foreign Relations Committee hearing on the status of U.S. policy toward Sudan two weeks ago caused reverberations throughout the Sudan activist community. Enough’s reaction to Gration’s testimony was cited in articles by the Associated Press, McClatchy, and on NPR.

Watch video clips of Gration responding to committee members pressing questions about the administration’s strategy in Sudan here.

Enough Co-founder John Prendergast, along with former Special Envoy to Sudan Richard Williamson and former Special Representative to Sudan Roger Winter, testified the day before at a House Foreign Affairs subcommittee hearing, where they called for a U.S. policy toward the Sudanese government that includes not just incentives, but also substantial pressures.  Read Enough’s coverage of the hearing here and John Prendergast’s prepared remarks here.

Enough Executive Director John Norris, pictured at right, testified before the Tom Lantos Human Rights Commission at a hearing on Sudan’s Comprehensive Peace Agreement.  Watch a video of his take on Sudan’s inclusion on the state sponsor of terrorism list, here

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STAND Chapter Raises Over $4,000 for Sister Schools

On August 3 the Harwich High School STAND chapter held its second fundraiser in three months for the Darfur Dream Team’s Sister Schools Program. The event featured a dinner, silent auction, and a benefit concert by folk musicians Johnny Irion and Sarah Lee Guthrie, daughter of folk musician Arlo Guthrie and granddaughter of the legendary Woody Guthrie. Enough Advisor Omer Ismail was a special guest at the event, which raised over $4,000 for the Sister Schools Program. Go to www.darfurdreamteam.org to read more about the event.


 

 

 

 
 

 

 

Activities, Actions, Advocacy

  • Text Secretary of State Hillary Clinton at 90822 and tell her to “help women in Congo, stop the conflict minerals trade” and “do not end Sudan sanctions without real progress.”  You can also email her here.  Send a clear message while she’s in Africa that it is critical to stop the violence against women in Congo and to maintain sanctions against Sudan until the government fulfills its obligations under the Comprehensive Peace Agreement. 
     
  • Vote for your favorite Come Clean 4 Congo YouTube video.  Voting is open until September 8.  The creator of the winning video will be flown to L.A. for a screening of the video at the Hollywood Film Festival.
     
  •  Follow us on Twitter!  Keep up to date by following ‘Enoughproject.’

Upcoming Events

  • Tuesday, August 18, Washington, D.C.
    President Obama to meet with Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak at the White House.  
     
  • Saturday, September 19, Morrison, CO and Portland, OR
    Run For Congo Women road races to raise awareness of the use of rape as a weapon of war in Congo.  Click here for more information.

     

    (Click here for details on the Enough Project’s events page.)

    We’re taking

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