Stakeholder Options for Responsible Sourcing are Expanding, But More Information on Smelters is Needed : Report to Congressional Committees
Armed groups in eastern DRC continue to commit severe human rights abuses and profit from the exploitation of minerals, according to reports from the United Nations. Congress included a provision in the 2010 Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act to address the trade in "conflict minerals", tin, tantalum, tungsten, and gold. Section 1502 of the Act directed several U.S. agencies to report or focus on issues related to conflict minerals. This report examines, among other things, (1) the extent to which relevant U.S. agencies have undertaken activities related to responsible sourcing of conflict minerals and (2) what is known about the status of, and information provided by, stakeholder initiatives focused on responsible sourcing of conflict minerals from the DRC and adjoining countries. GAO reviewed and analyzed documents and data covering 2003 through 2014. We interviewed representatives from State, USAID, SEC, Commerce, nongovernmental organizations, industry, and international organizations who are cognizant of conflict minerals issues. GAO recommends that the Secretary of Commerce provide Congress a plan that outlines the steps, with associated timeframes, to develop and report the required information about smelters and refiners of conflict minerals worldwide.
In the two-and-a-half decades since the end of the Cold War, policy makers have become acutely aware of the extent to which the world today faces mass atrocities. In an effort to prevent the death, destruction and global chaos wrought by these crimes, the agendas for both national and international policy have grown beyond conflict prevention to encompass atrocity prevention, protection of civilians, transitional justice and the responsibility to protect. Yet, to date, there has been no attempt to address the topic of the prevention of mass atrocities from the theoretical, policy and practicing standpoints simultaneously. This volume is designed to fill that gap, clarifying and solidifying the present understanding of atrocity prevention. It will serve as an authoritative work on the state of the field.