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I was on a panel on Friday on conflict minerals, which was very instructive. Toby Whitney, the legislative director of Congressman Jim McDermott, was there – McDermott was one of the main sponsors of the “Congo conflict minerals” bill signed into law by President Obama in June this year. I

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Gen. Faustin Munene, who disappeared several weeks ago from Kinshasa in mysterious circumstances, has resurfaced on diaspora radio stations, saying he will fight to free Congo from oppressors and foreigners. There had been some speculations about Munene, a retired, former vice-minister of the interior from Bandundu province, since his family

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The BBC ran a nice piece today on Gen. Gabriel Amisi,( aka Tango Four) – they have hard evidence that he helped Geminaco take over the Omate gold mine in Walikale territory in return for 25% of the monthly production. Check out the program here and there will be a

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According to sources in the national assembly, the members of the new national electoral commission have been nominated. It looks like the new body will be led by a close associate of Joseph Kabila and a Methodist minister, Daniel Mulunda Ngoy. According to the law on the CENI, the majority

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The World Bank put out its year “Doing Business” report where it reports on how easy it is to start and operate a business around the world. First, the good news. The DR Congo moved up four places to #175 out of 183. Break out the champagne. Seriously, though, the

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Some of the stories I haven’t been blogging on but should have: The South Korean government is considering a minerals-for-infrastructure deal with the Congolese government worth $1 billion. Korean companies would build a deep water port on the Atlantic and a waste water treatment plant for Kinshasa in return for

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There have been several scandals in the Congo over the past month that have gone more or less unreported by the foreign press but that have had a large impact domestically, all involving abuses by the security forces. First the Armand Tungulu affair. Tungulu was a Congolese who had been

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We are still a long way away from elections in the Congo (November 2011 is the chimerical date), but, as any Congo Siasa enthusiast will know, there are already a bunch of contenders. See here for two short Jeune Afrique interviews with Vital Kamerhe and Etienne Tshisekedi from last month

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A report was released last week by the Open Society Justice Initiative, penned by University of British Columbia professor James Stewart, on “Corporate War Crimes,” a primer on how pillage can be tried as a war crime. Interesting and contentious stuff. Apparently The Hague Regulations of 1907 and the Geneva

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A bunch of Congolese politicians have recently been courting Jean-Pierre Bemba, the head of the Congolese opposition who is now in jail at the ICC in The Hague. First it was Vital Kamerhe, the former Kabila ally turned opposition politician. Now apparently José Makila, the former governor of Equateur who

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