The consumption of electronic products is directly fuelling conflict and sexual violence against women and men by funding armed groups in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), thus helping to perpetuate the deadliest conflict since World War II.
We are calling on the European Union to introduce regulations requiring companies to implement the United Nations / Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development’s (OECD) Due Diligence Guidance for Responsible Supply Chains, which provide a blueprint for companies to help eliminate conflict minerals from their products.
Rebels, militia and abusive units of the Congolese army are making fortunes by exploiting four key minerals (tin, tungsten, tantalum and gold ores) that often end up in the circuit boards and capacitors of electronic devices sold throughout the European Union. Opaque international supply chains enable these ‘conflict minerals’ to make their way from rebel-controlled mines to a wide range of consumer electronics, notably mobile phones and computers.
In January, 2012, the European Commission (EC) issued a Trade and Development Communication which announced support for the UN/OECD guidelines, stating that “we will advocate greater support for and use of the… OECD’s recommendations on due diligence and responsible supply chain management.” In 2010 and 2011, the European Parliament passed two resolutions calling for the EC to propose conflict minerals legislation.
Our petition is calling on European policy makers to follow up on this momentum by adopting concrete solutions.
Please join us in this effort by signing this petition to the EU, so that the Congo’s resources can be used to promote peace and development.