Please explore the links below to find out more about why fairtrade mobile phones, free of conflict minerals, will have an impact on the ongoing conflict in the Congo and the wider region.
Why conflict free?
Women in eastern Congo explain how the rush for Congo’s gold and rare earth minerals is fuelling a culture of violence and forced labour and exploiting some of the most vulnerable people on earth: women are raped while men work for 33p per day.
This compelling Global Witness report sets out how the groups responsible for mass rape and murder enrich themselves through the illegal international trade in conflict minerals, and outlines the measures required to ensure that eastern Congo’s mines help rather than hinder development.
Learn more about the role of conflict minerals in fuelling the conflict in the Congo.
… pursuant to Security Council resolution 1952 (2010) concerning the Democratic Republic of the Congo, 21 October 2011.
Schapiro explains why due diligence in the sourcing of conflict minerals is vital. Since the signing into US law of the Dodd Frank Act, a higher proportion than before of tin, tungsten and tantalum mined in the Congo is not funding conflict.
Barnaby Dye writes on conflict minerals and the global reach of Congo Calling’s work.
About the Congo and the conflict
A detailed background to the conflict in eastern Congo, including the role of natural resources and of rape as a tool of war and manipulation, from the Centre for Peace and Conflict Studies at St Andrew’s University.
Learn more about the political history and current political situation in the Congo in the aftermath of last year’s elections, from film footage of an important conference at St Andrew’s University including members of the Scottish Congolese Coalition.
A concise, informative article on the history, politics and geography of the Congo: “the plunder of gems and minerals continued, with elite networks running a self-financing war economy centered on pillage”, UN 2002.
This ground-breaking series features amazing people from eastern Congo, stories of hope from people living their lives “amid the deadliest war in the world.”
Follow Jason Stearns’ blog, which is much-respected within the Congo and beyond.
CNN reports on the Congo and its capital Kinshasa
Part 1 From war to booming metropolis: Inside Africa explores what makes the capital of the Democratic Republic of the Congo one of Africa’s fastest growing cities.
Part 2 Kinshasa’s Western-style supermarket: Olivier Ndombasi explains how his family has helped change how business is done in the Democratic Republic of Congo.
Part 3 Congolese returnee strikes gold: Alain Yav talks about leaving a corporate job in South Africa to contribute to the future of the Democratic Republic of Congo.
Full of humanity, these powerful photographs raise awareness about women who experience violence in the Congo, both sexual and physical: “12 percent of women in Congo have been raped at least once in their lifetime. That’s approximately 1.8 million women.” A large cause of this violence is corruption and the exploitation of civilians in mining communities. The accompanying essays explain that “This is not a natural disaster; it is our disaster as a global community.”
Author Eve Ensler speaks about her work with the City of Joy refuge in the Congo and says that “Women will rise up and take back the Congo for the Congolese.”
Guardian interactive you can use to take a detailed look at positive and negative impacts your smartphone has made on people and planet.
Is the smartphone in your pocket fuelling violence on the other side of the world?
Clare Bryden asks some uncomfortable questions about our complex relationship with gadgets – and investigates new ways to connect more ethically.