OPJCC Priority Issue: The Democratic Republic of the Congo
Sisters of Charity Congregational Stand
We, Sisters of Charity of Cincinnati, commit ourselves to be informed about the human rights violations in the Democratic Republic of the Congo and call on our government to do everything in its power to end the violent conflicts there through the following actions:
- Pass legislation that would help stop trade in conflict minerals that is sustaining a brutal war of unfathomable atrocities in the Congo, especially against women.
- Create conditions of security for the return of displaced peoples to their lands.
- Provide diplomatic support from the US Government for MONUSCO (the UN Organization Stabilization Mission) so that it can fulfill its mandate of forestalling armed attacks against local communities and enforcing the UN arms embargo on Congo.
- Continue high-level US diplomatic engagement with the African Union, European Union and the United Nations to avert wider regional armed conflict. We further commit ourselves to pray for the people in the Congo and for their leaders.
Where is the Democratic Republic of the Congo?
BBC News, Africa August 1, 2018
The recent history of the Democratic Republic of Congo (DR Congo) has been one of civil war and corruption.
DR Congo is a vast country with immense economic resources and, until recently, has been at the center of what some observers call “Africa’s world war,” with widespread civilian suffering as a result.
The war claimed an up to six million lives, either as a direct result of fighting or because of disease and malnutrition.
The war had an economic as well as a political side. Fighting was fueled by the country’s vast mineral wealth, with all sides taking advantage of the anarchy to plunder natural resources. Some militias continue to fight in the east, where a large United Nations force is trying to keep the peace.
Full Name: Democratic Republic of the Congo
Not to be confused with the neighboring Republic of the Congo.
Population: 81.5 million
Area: 2.34 million sq km (905,354 sq miles)
Major languages: French, Lingala, Kiswahili, Kikongo, Tshiluba
Major religions: Christianity, Islam
Life expectancy: 58 years (men), 61 years (women)
Currency: Congolese franc