News / Africa

Human Rights Campaign Complements US Effort to Fight LRA

Sean Maroney

U.S. President Barack Obama's decision to send military advisers to central Africa to help in the fight against Lord's Resistance Army rebels follows a long, determined effort by rights groups to publicize the LRA crisis affecting millions.

The fight to end the LRA's reign of terror in central Africa and capture its leader, Joseph Kony, will not be easy.  The rebels are well-known for attacking remote villages and then melting back into the surrounding jungle.

But Michael Poffenberger, the executive director for the Washington-based group Resolve, is working to change that.  His group has compiled data from the area since December 2009 to provide a more comprehensive picture. "Four out of every five attacks that we documented were never before publicly reported," he said. "And so what we aim to do with this is to really show the world, 'Here's the full scale of what's going on.'"

The group updates its online Crisis Tracker in real time with information from the United Nations, partner organizations and a high-frequency radio network.  But it's not just a map that lists attacks.  It's also a storytelling tool, showing the rate of violence and where LRA rebels are moving their attacks.

"I want President Obama to end this war.  We do not know why we are being killed without any cause," said one female victim of the violence.

Human Rights Watch launched an appeal to the Obama administration in early 2010 that allowed victims to tell their stories to the president.  Mr. Obama cited the work of aid groups as part of his decision to reaffirm the U.S. commitment against the LRA later that year.

Tom Malinowski is HRW's Washington advocacy director.  He says he hopes the United States uses all tools available for a comprehensive strategy aimed at defeating the rebels. "If you provoke the hornets in the hornets' nest without effectively removing them from the forest or the battlefield, they tend to strike out even more viciously.  So that's the dilemma," he said.

The United States supported another regional campaign against the LRA in 2008.  But that mission failed to capture Joseph Kony and other commanders, resulting in what human-rights groups called retaliatory attacks against civilians.

This time around, rights groups hope it will be different.

You May Like

UN: 1 Million Somalis at Risk of Hunger

Group warns region is in dire need of humanitarian aid, with at least 200,000 children under age of five acutely malnourished as drought hits southern, central part of nation More

Human Rights Groups Allege Supression of Freedoms in Thailand

Thailand’s military, police have suppressed release of independent report assessing human rights in kingdom during first 100 days of latest coup More

Jennifer Lawrence Contacts FBI After Nude Photos Hacked

'Silver Linings Playbook' actress' photos were posted on image-sharing forum 4chan; Federal Bureau of Investigations is looking into matter More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Ukraine Schools Resume Classes, Donate to Government Forcesi
X
September 02, 2014 12:58 PM
A new school year has started in Ukraine but thousands of children in the war-torn east are unable to attend because of ongoing clashes with pro-Russia rebels. In Ukraine's capital, patriotic education has become the norm along with donations to support injured security forces fighting to take back rebel-held areas. VOA's Daniel Schearf reports from Kyiv.
Video

Video Ukraine Schools Resume Classes, Donate to Government Forces

A new school year has started in Ukraine but thousands of children in the war-torn east are unable to attend because of ongoing clashes with pro-Russia rebels. In Ukraine's capital, patriotic education has become the norm along with donations to support injured security forces fighting to take back rebel-held areas. VOA's Daniel Schearf reports from Kyiv.
Video

Video US Detainees Want Negotiators for Freedom in North Korea

The three U.S. detainees held in North Korea were permitted to speak with foreign media Monday. The government of Kim Jong Un restricted the topics of the questions, and the interviews in Pyongyang were limited to five minutes. Each of the men asked Washington to send a representative to Pyongyang to secure his release. VOA’s Carolyn Presutti has our story.
Video

Video Internet, Technology Offer New Tools for Journalists

The Internet and rapidly evolving technology is quickly changing how people receive news and how journalists deliver it. There are now more ways to tell a story than ever before. One school in Los Angeles is teaching the next generation of journalists with the help of a state-of-the-art newsroom. Elizabeth Lee has this report.
Video

Video Turkmen From Amerli Describe Survival of IS Siege

Over the past few weeks, hundreds of Shi'ite Turkmen have fled the town of Amerli seeking refuge in the northern city of Kirkuk. Despite recent military gains after U.S. airstrikes that were coordinated with Iraqi and Kurdish forces, the situation remains dire for Amerli’s residents. Sebastian Meyer went to Kirkuk for VOA to speak to those who managed to escape.
Video

Video West Africa Ebola Vaccine Trials Possible by Early 2015

A U.S. health agency is speeding up clinical trials of a possible vaccine against the deadly Ebola virus that so far has killed more than 1,500 people in West Africa. If successful, the next step would be a larger trial in countries where the outbreak is occurring. VOA's Carol Pearson has more.
Video

Video Survivors Commemorate 70th Anniversary of Nazi Liquidation of Jewish Ghetto

When the German Nazi army occupied the Polish city of Lodz in 1939, it marked the beginning of a long nightmare for the Jewish community that once made up one third of the population. Roughly 200,000 people were forced into the Lodz Ghetto. Less than 7,000 survived. As VOA’s Kane Farabaugh reports, some survivors gathered at the Union League Club in Chicago on the 70th anniversary of the liquidation of the Lodz Ghetto to remember those who suffered at the hands of the Nazi regime.
Video

Video Cost to Raise Child in US Continues to Rise

The cost of raising a child in the United States continues to rise. In its latest annual report, the U.S. Department of Agriculture says middle income families with a child born in 2013 can expect to spend more than $240,000 before that child turns 18. And sending that child to college more than doubles that amount. VOA’s Deborah Block visited with a couple with one child in Alexandria, Virginia, to learn if the report reflects their lifestyle.
Video

Video Chaotic Afghan Vote Recount Threatens Nation’s Future

Afghanistan’s troubled presidential election continues to be rocked by turmoil as an audit of the ballots drags on. The U.N. says the recount will not be completed before September 10. Observers say repeated disputes and delays are threatening the orderly transfer of power and could have dangerous consequences. VOA correspondent Meredith Buel reports.

AppleAndroid