Central Africa | Wilson Center

Central Africa

Day I: African Growth and Opportunity Act Civil Society Forum 2010 "A Decade of Progress in Bridging the U.S.-Africa Trade Gap"

Please see the attached documents below for both the notes on the proceedings of the event and the powerpoint presentations made over the two days.

Thursday, July 29

8:15 – 8:45am Registration and Breakfast
9:00 – 9:30am Welcome and Introduction of Speaker, Steve McDonald, Director, Africa Program, Woodrow Wilson Center
Keynote Speaker: Senator Benjamin Cardin (D-MD), Senate Foreign Relations Committee

Truth and Reconciliation Processes – A Global Assessment

This program was the second of a two-part series examining truth and reconciliation processes that have emerged in response to mass violence and atrocities. The first part, held at the Visions Theater the previous evening, centered on Rwanda's particular experience, using, as a discussion vehicle, Anne Aghion's new film that tracks the return to his community of a Rwandan Hutu believed to have been involved in the 1994 genocide.

"In Rwanda we say….the family that does not speak dies"

This film screening will be held at Visions Theatre.

The film will be followed by a panel discussion with:

Anne Aghion, director and producer, "In Rwanda we say…";
Shamil Idriss, Search for Common Ground;
Lars Waldorf, former Human Rights Watch, Researcher in Rwanda, 2002-2004;
Antoine Rutayisire, Rwanda National Unity and Reconciliation Commission;
Moderator: Gayle Smith, Senior Fellow, Center for American Progress, and former Special Advisor to the President and Senior Director for African Affairs (NSC).

Sexual Violence in the Democratic Republic of Congo

Venantie Bisimwa, the Coordinator of Réseau des Femmes pour la Défense des Droits et la Paix (RFDP), a network of women's organizations based in Bukavu; and Jeanne d'Arc Chakupewa, the Coordinator of Réseau des Femmes pour la Développement Associatif, a collective of 44 women's organizations based in Uvira, gave a detailed report of an ongoing investigation into sexual violence against women and girls in South Kivu in the Democratic Republic of Congo.

The two organizations are partnered with the London-based International Alert.

The Democratic Republic of the Congo: A Peace-Building Update

Ambassador Swing gave a detailed briefing of the current and planned activities of the UN Observer Mission to the Democratic Republic of the Congo (MONUC). Excluding the mission in Liberia (UNMIL), MONUC is the largest of 16 UN Missions in the world with a total peace keeping budget of $641million. It is one of the largest and most complex missions of the United Nations to date, with over ten thousand troops, seven hundred sixty military observers, and over a hundred nationalities involved.

POSTPONED---Untangling West African Conflicts

This event has been postponed. Please check back on this site for the rescheduled date.

Development and Accountability: The Role of Independent Advisory Groups

The Chad-Cameroon Petroleum Development and Pipeline Project—which has developed oil fields in southern Chad and constructed a 1,070 kilometer pipeline to transport the oil to Cameroon's Atlantic coast for shipment—is a unique extractive-resource endeavor that is designed to transform the economy of Chad while observing strict environmental and social standards.

Director's Forum with Bill Clinton

President Clinton focused his talk on his recent two-week trip to Africa, during which he visited five nations: Mozambique, Rwanda, Ghana, Nigeria, and South Africa. Given his stated interest in economically empowering poor communities around the world, Clinton visited Africa to continue his work to promote HIV/AIDS treatment and prevention, democratization, and economic development. Other areas he has actively pursued since leaving office that were among the themes promoted on his Africa trip included racial and ethnic reconciliation; citizen participation; and education.

Captive in the Congo: A Consul's Return to the Heart of Darkness

Summary of a meeting with Michael P. Hoyt, Former Consul in the Congo.

Certification: The Path to Conflict-Free Minerals from Congo

The Woodrow Wilson Center's Africa Program in co-sponsorship with the Enough Project assembled a panel of experts from American, British and Congolese governments, private industry, and the non-governmental community to discuss the deplorable situation in eastern Democratic Republic of the Congo involving conflict minerals and the way forward.