An International Overview

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Congolese Children Toil in Mines to Pay their School Fees

Child labor is a growing problem in many developing countries like the Democratic Republic of Congo. In the DRC, many impoverished children are forced to enter the workforce at a young age to help support their families and themselves financially. Recently, a mining boom in the Congo has led to an increase in child employment. Throughout the DRC, many child laborers become trapped in a cycle of poverty because they are unable to pursue an education while working for logging and mining companies. In this article, the author hopes to draw attention to the plight of child-laborers worldwide. The article can also be seen as a call to action for governments to play a more active role in enforcing child labor regulations and notions of internationally accepted human rights.

Kanyunyu, John. “Congolese Children Toil in Mines to Pay their School Fees.” Deutsche Welle. 12 June 2011. Web. 28 Nov. 2011. <,,15146577,00.html>.



Rights Group Seeks Marange Diamond Ban

Eight years ago, the United Nations introduced the Kimberley Process Certification Scheme, which encompasses an attempt to minimize the purchase of diamonds mined in areas of conflict. Even though this initiative was started with good intentions, many critics feel it has largely been unsuccessful in accomplishing its original goals. The author of this article notes that the UN has failed to enact restraints on diamonds mined in Zimbabwe despite numerous human rights abuses committed by the government. Many organizations, including Human Rights Watch, have criticized Zimbabwe for its mining practices and have attempted to take action against its government. Despite this, efforts to reprimand Zimbabwe have largely fallen short of their original goals because the Zimbabwean government has received diplomatic support from countries like Namibia, South Africa, and Russia, who support the current political regime.

“Rights Group Seeks Marange Diamonds Ban.” The Zimbabwe Situation. 24 Feb. 2011. Web. 28 Nov. 2011. <>.



Human Rights Council: Resolution on International Business Needs Strengthening

This article from Human Rights Watch (HRW) criticizes the recent efforts of the United Nations to reform international business practices. While the author does recognize the need for reform, he argues that the United Nations has not gone far enough with its attempts to protect the rights of workers and communities. Fundamentally, the draft of the proposed resolution does not have the legal framework needed to make human rights protection a reality. Despite being drafted with good intentions, HRW is quick to point out that UN resolutions will not be effective unless they are specifically geared to the problems of today.

“Human Rights Council: Resolution on International Business Needs Strengthening.” Human Rights Watch. 15 June 2011. Web. 28 Nov. 2011. <>.

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