U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations Nikki Haley is visiting the Democratic Republic of Congo as part of her trip to Africa.
Experts and analysts from the Enough Project and its investigative initiative, The Sentry, are available for comment and analysis.
Holly Dranginis, Senior Policy Analyst at the Enough Project, said: "President Kabila's strategy of using manipulation and violence to stall elections has been successful, uninhibited by the international community's ad-hoc efforts to support democracy in Congo. Ambassador Haley should use her visit to tell the Congolese government, stronger pressure is coming down the pike if those tactics continue. It is also an important chance to demonstrate her full-throated supported for civil society groups demanding their democratic rights."
John Prendergast, Founding Director at the Enough Project and Co-Founder of the Sentry, said: "Congo's kleptocratic ruling party concentrates all power and wealth, leaving large swathes of the population completely marginalized and highly motivated to violently contest the status quo. Because this rot at the core has never been addressed through peace efforts, endless conflict results."
The Sentry's latest investigative report documents how a Congolese bank linked to President Joseph Kabila's brother enabled Hezbollah financiers to bust U.S. sanctions. It makes hard-hitting recommendations for U.S. authorities to use financial pressure to improve accountability and disrupt illicit money flows.
RESOURCES FOR REPORTERS COVERING AMBASSADOR HALEY'S TRIP TO CONGO:
Read Enough's latest report on Congo: Strategic Pressure: A Blueprint for Addressing New Threats and Supporting Democratic Change in the DRC. In the report, Enough Project argues that a more robust international strategy to address a leadership-driven crisis Congo can avert new potential threats to regional stability and U.S. national security. The report recommends the international community, regional states, and the private sector should work on four tracks to support Congolese efforts:
Use financial pressure to change the Kabila regime's cost-benefit calculations to hold a democratic transition.
As more pressure is applied, support negotiations to create a path to credible, timely elections and Kabila's exit from the Presidency.
Enact targeted measures to help resolve conflict and improve accountability in Kasai and eastern Congo
Combat corruption by pushing for transparency reforms of state-owned mining companies.
Read The Sentry's recent investigative report on Congo: The Terrorists' Treasury: How a Bank Linked to Congo's President Enabled Hezbollah Financiers to Bust U.S. Sanctions. The report highlights how inadequate anti-money laundering compliance and sanctions enforcement standards at banks can empower a wide range of criminal groups and corrupt actors in Congo and around the world.
Read John Prendergast's new op-ed in Fox News on Ambassador Haley's trip to Africa: 'Mission Possible' for Fixing Peacemaking Model
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About THE ENOUGH PROJECT - an anti-atrocity policy group
The Enough Project supports peace and an end to mass atrocities in Africa's deadliest conflict zones. Together with its investigative initiative The Sentry, Enough counters armed groups, violent kleptocratic regimes, and their commercial partners that are sustained and enriched by corruption, criminal activity, and the trafficking of natural resources. By helping to create consequences for the major perpetrators and facilitators of atrocities and corruption, Enough seeks to build leverage in support of peace and good governance. Enough conducts research in conflict zones, engages governments and the private sector on potential policy solutions, and mobilizes public campaigns focused on peace, human rights, and breaking the links between war and illicit profit. Learn more - and join us - at www.EnoughProject.org.
About THE SENTRY - an investigative initiative of the Enough Project
The Sentry is composed of best-in-class financial forensic investigators, policy analysts, and regional experts who follow the dirty money and build investigative cases focusing on the corrupt transnational networks most responsible for Africa's deadliest conflicts. By creating a significant financial cost to these kleptocrats through network sanctions, anti-money laundering measures, prosecutions, and other tools, The Sentry aims to disrupt the profit incentives for mass atrocities and oppression, and creates new leverage in support of peace efforts and African frontline human rights defenders. The Sentry's partner, the Enough Project, undertakes high-level advocacy with policy-makers around the world as well as wide-reaching education campaigns by mobilizing students, faith-based groups, celebrities, and others. Co-founded by George Clooney and John Prendergast, The Sentry is an initiative of Not On Our Watch (NOOW) and the Enough Project. The Sentry currently focuses its work in South Sudan, Sudan, the Democratic Republic of Congo, Somalia, and the Central African Republic.
In less than two years, The Sentry has created hard-hitting reports and converted extensive research into a large volume of dossiers on individuals and entities connected to grand corruption, violence, or serious human rights abuses. The investigative team has turned those dossiers over to government regulatory and law enforcement agencies in the U.S. and around the world, as well as to compliance officers at the world's largest banks.