The Future is Equal

Commodities of war: Communities speak out on the true cost of conflict in eastern DRC

Recent waves of displacement in eastern Democratic Republic of Congo, affecting more than 760,000 people since the beginning of 2012 in the Kivu provinces alone, reflect a new dimension to the country’s ongoing crisis. As the Congolese army fights M23 rebels, localised armed groups are springing up, and areas that were relatively stable are again under attack. Evidence gathered by Oxfam in 2012 shows that government soldiers, armed rebels, police, and civilian authorities are all vying for the right to exploit local communities and extort money or goods from them, pushing people further into poverty and undermining their efforts to earn a living.