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What's Going on in the Congo and Why Should we Care?

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With upwards of 6.1 million people displaced within the Democratic Republic of Congo, the questions remain of how and why the Congolese diaspora is being affected. 


Human rights violations and mass displacement have resulted from ongoing armed conflict between several rebel militias and government troops. There are now congested camps for internally displaced persons and a shortage of resources as a result of millions of people being compelled to escape across borders or internally. Serious human rights violations, including sexual assault and the enlistment of minors as combatants, have been prevalent throughout the conflict. Concurrently, population dislocation and insufficient healthcare access have made matters worse, along with disease outbreaks like Ebola. 


The violence has been intensified by the fight for control of the DRC's abundant natural resources, which include minerals like coltan. The chronic character of the crisis has been exacerbated by political instability at the national and regional levels. The situation is still complicated despite the efforts of humanitarian groups, and a thorough settlement calls for addressing the underlying causes of the conflict, fostering effective governance, and guaranteeing the preservation of human rights. To obtain up-to-date information about the humanitarian catastrophe in the Democratic Republic of the Congo, it is necessary to go to credible and recent sources.


To continue, the students at Gahr High School wonder how this issue can be solved with many ASB members recounting that they wish for a democratic solution to the problem. However, there is not much that an individual can do except do what Americans do best, and fight the systems of oppression. As citizens, peoples and consumers, it is our duty to redirect our money to alternative companies that produce electron materials. 


Some companies like Fairphone have made groundbreaking new steps and innovation by creating a mission statement that puts humanity first and identifies the absolute resilience we have.  Fairphone is one of the first companies that allows the customer to be in control of their experience with their phones. 


Though the situation stems from colonization and the harmful effects of over consumerism, the rise of electric cars with their lithium batteries and new phones every year are what make the issue worse. The cobalt mines, which bar artisanal miners, or human miners around the world, are overfilled with workers in the Congo. As consumers, we can identify our spending habits and how we redirect our funds and use morally aware companies to get our things. 

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