Children at risk in the hands of the FDLR in eastern of Democratic Republic of the Congo

By: Joseph H. Cavallaro- Vision GRAM-International     May 26, 2015 – In recent weeks, several hundred Congolese children have escaped from armed groups in eastern Democratic Republic of the Congo. Though the freeing of children from armed groups is always a cause for celebration, there are still an estimated 30,000 children fighting with armed groups in the DR Congo. The armed rebel group that uses many of these child soldiers is the Democratic Forces for the Liberation of Rwanda (FDLR).  They are remnants of the original FDLR that is responsible…

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UN Arms Trade Treaty to take effect in December

UNITED NATIONS (AP) — An ambitious treaty designed to regulate the multibillion-dollar global arms trade will take effect on Dec. 24 after it was ratified Thursday by five more countries. Secretary General Ban Ki-moon said in a statement that more than 50 countries have now ratified the treaty, meaning it will soon take force. “Today marks a milestone,” Ban said, announcing that the Bahamas, Portugal, Saint Lucia, Senegal and Uruguay have now ratified the treaty, passed by the UN General Assembly less than two years ago. He said the treaty…

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African Heads of States seek protection before the civilians

Press release Ottawa, July 5th, 2014 Heads of African States seek to protect themselves against lawsuits in conferring immunity during their entire term. This is what emerges from the meeting of Africanheads of States, members of the African Union (AU), at their summit on 26 to June 27, 2014, in Malabo, Equatorial Guinea. For a long time, we have constantly bemoaned judicial accountability worn by African heads of States who commit or who have committed crimes of genocide, war crimes, crimes against humanity, after being unable to protect civilian populations.…

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Fifth Biennial Meeting of States on Illicit Trade in Small Arms

By Jennifer Fierberg In a Press Release by the General Assembly of the UN dated 16 June 2014, they stated: “Since 2003, Member States have gathered to consider implementation of the Programme of Action to Prevent, Combat and Eradicate the Illicit Trade in Small Arms and Light Weapons in All Its Aspects, adopted in 2001.  The Programme of Action prescribes measures for controlling the proliferation of small arms and light weapons, including legislation, destruction of confiscated weapons and the strengthening of State capacity to identify and trace small arms.  The…

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Vision GRAM-International : Impunity to Justice in DR Congo

Posted on May 12, 2014 by Vision GRAM International By: Victor Amisi, Executive Director Vision GRAM International  (Ottawa, May 10) -Since the wars in DR Congo, women and girls were victims of rape and sexual violence. Acts committed in violation of international human rights law and humanitarian law.  Efforts were made to put an end to barbaric acts committed by all armed groups. But rape cases are increasing and the authors still at large.  Vision GRAM-International is deeply concerned by the existence of impunity and lack of justice for victims. In recent years, there…

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Vision-GRAM International visits DRC: Interview with Executive Director Victor Amisi

Vision-GRAM International (Group of action against Marginalization) is an organization of human rights affiliated to project GRAM- Kivu, which works to promote human rights in defending the rights of children and women.  The vision of the organization dates from 1996 when the region of the Great Lakes – (Africa), conflicts have plagued the Democratic Republic of Congo and created millions of victims, death, displaced, wounded (men, women and children) because of traffic and proliferation of small arms and massive violations of human rights, where its has accomplished great actions. Established…

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Empowering women empowers the world

   By: Jennifer Fierberg The eastern part of the Democratic Republic of the Congo has been mired in violence perpetrated by various rebel groups in geo-strategic and ethnic wars for the last two decades. This area of the DRC is rich in mineral wealth that foreign countries seek to use in many electronic and travel innovations. Unfortunately, access to these minerals has wreaked havoc and devastation on the communities in this area. Those most affected by these ongoing wars are women and children. Men also suffer from this horrific violence…

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Statement from Vision GRAM regarding the Adoption of the Arms Trade Treaty-

Wednesday April 3, 2013   Today Vision GRAM celebrates the victory of the adoption of the Arms Trade Treaty. After a long battle, 154 states voted in favor, with 23 abstentions and 3 voting against. This is significant, as states took this RESPONSIBLE action on behalf of the hundreds of thousands of people around the world whose lives will be saved or greatly improved. We applaud the decision of the States who voted to contribute to Peace and security of the world.   Violence destroys the lives of many people, though…

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Take it or Leave it

By Jennifer Fierberg Control Arms has published their reaction to the final draft of the Arms Trade Treaty. Just before the negotiations ended earlier today the President of the committee stated “take it or leave it” and then an hour later the final draft was published. Control Arms is an organization formed to support a strong Arms Trade Treaty and has been part of the process since 2006. They have tirelessly organized, lobbied and partnered with many organizations in order to seek protection and inclusion for the innocent victims of…

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Finish the job!

By Jennifer Fierberg It has been nearly 10 days of tense negotiation at the UN in order to solidify a strong Arms Trade Treaty that will protect human lives across the world. Between legal scrubbing, lobbying, educating, connecting and making sure everyone’s needs are met there is still a large gap where the lives of millions of people remain at risk. World leaders and their delegations are getting down to the business of closing loopholes but there is still a dire need for stronger language in the area of diversions,…

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