Elza Vumi: Everyone Everywhere Must Get Involved

Elza Vumi. Congolese human right activist at the World Francophone Women Forum on March 20th, 2013 in Paris.

Elza Vumi. Congolese human right activist at the World Francophone Women Forum on March 20th, 2013 in Paris.

“MONUSCO is there to protect the looters, not Congolese people.” Elza Vumi

Speaking at the World Francophone Women’s Forum centered on the Democratic Republic of Congo organized in Paris on March 20th, 2013 Congolese activist Elza Vumi stresses clearly the responsibility of the entire world in the crimes being committed in that country for the last 20 years. The text reproduced here is her translated intervention at that conference.

“Researching the causes [of what is happening in DRC], it is now 20 years that we experience impunity. We must admit that the situation in Eastern Congo is indescribable. It’s Hell on Earth. That is how it is described. It [DRC] is a country victim of an external aggression. By neighboring countries which are armed agents of the international capitalism. We must admit that fact. In that part of the world, Eastern DRC, there is an incredible and exceptional concentration of strategic minerals [indispensable] for the new technological revolution in which we are already. Consequently, we all have Congolese women’s blood in our electrical devices [we carry everyday and everywhere]. That means we are all responsible. It is an international responsibility. It is not enough to say “What can we do for them?” No, you must all get involved. Because all our countries: France, Belgium, Europe, are involved in that war through their multinationals. For 20 years, it is very clear. All the multinationals and countries involved are listed in available UN experts’ reports. You can download them [from the internet]. They are accessible at the UN website.

It is not enough to say “What can we do for them?” No, you must all get involved.

Speaking on behalf of Congolese people, what are Congolese populations saying about MONUSCO. It is there to protect the looters, not to look after Congolese people. Because there are women’s rapes which are practiced within short distance from their offices. Dr Mukwege was at the point of being assassinated. And his women patients claimed that he was kidnapped to Belgium. We have all understood the operation as a forced exile. That did hurt us. And all the women of his hospital said, “We are going to contribute and get back our doctor. We are going to be his bodyguards ourselves.” The women of his hospital… It is an international responsibility. And for [persistent] impunity, DRC people demand international reparations. Because the woman body is the canvas of humankind, the weapon of war is the men’s penis. What is happening is that the West men’s penis ask Africans’ men penis to rape women [in Eastern Congo]. We are in a situation of ethnic cleansing. Today, the same way Yugoslavia has been partitioned, DRC balkanization is on track. And it happens that the African army that we could replace the MONUSCO contingent with consists of soldiers from countries which are invading/occupying DRC. Consequently, it is the entire world which must get mobilized for such unprecedented crimes.“

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