Granma | September 06, 2017
French soldiers in the Central African Republic. Photo: http://www.hispantv.com
For the vast majority of media outlets Africa is a continent in chaos, a place of countless massacres, epidemics, and starvation caused by conflicts, that generate extremist groups which mercilessly loot, rape, and kidnap.
Also a place with enchanting landscapes, abundant mineral resources, and at the same time threatened by drought and desertification, for many in the West, Africa is the kingdom of tribal conflicts, smuggling, and inevitable poverty.Read More »
by Ann Garrison
Genocost, a UK-based Congolese advocacy group, commemorated Congo Genocide this week on August 2nd. August 2nd is the day that US allies Rwanda and Uganda invaded the Democratic Republic of the Congo, starting the Second Congo War in 1998. Though a peace treaty was signed in 2003, the violence, displacement, and mass killing continue. War epidemiologists working with the International Rescue Committee estimated the death toll at 5.4 million during just 10 years of the nearly 20-year old conflict.
Genocost asks that nations formally recognize August 2nd as Congo Genocide Commemoration Day. I spoke to Genocost spokesperson Sylvester Mido, a Congolese British IT professional and activist. His family fled Congo in 1999, when he was 16 years old.
Ann Garrison: Sylvester, why does your group want to “commemorate” a genocide that is ongoing? Aren’t genocides and other tragedies usually commemorated in retrospect?
Sylvestre Mido: We want to commemorate the genocide in Congo because Congo has a history filled with forgotten tragedies.There are no commemorations for the 10 million Congolese killed under Belgium’s King Leopold II’s reign of terror. King Leopold II wiped out half our population at that time—over a century ago—for the sake of rubber, ivory, and gold.Read More »