That was the question participants at today's Cyber Seminar promoted by the Norwegian Council for Africa sought to address.
The debate was introduced by Dr. Muzong W. Kodi, coordinator of the British-Congo Forum at Chatham House, who offered the following explanations:
The various attempts that have been made so far to resolve the enduring conflict in Eastern Congo have failed because they have not addressed the root causes of the problem which has been wrongly dealt with as an exclusively Congolese concern. This conflict is also the result of the mismanagement of the consequences of the 1994 Rwandan genocide, which has put the Kivus in the frontline of the Tutsi-Hutu bloody confrontation. The root causes are:
• The illicit exploitation of the natural resources of Eastern Congo by trading networks put in place during the two wars of 1996-1997 and 1998-2003 by the occupying armies of Rwanda and Uganda which include all the Congolese militias, units of the Congolese national army, the Rwandan Hutu militias in Congo, and Congolese and Rwandan traders.
• Discrimination in land and other resource distribution between the various communities.
• Culture of impunity for human rights violations and other crimes.
[More details here]