September 16, 2019
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Impact of Conflict Minerals

General Assembly: Special Political Committee

Topic: Impact of Conflict Minerals

A mineral is classified as a “conflict mineral” if it is extracted or extorted by an armed group, often through the use of forced labor. Minerals acquired in this way include gold, columbite-tantalite (coltan), cassiterite, tungsten, and wolframite, and the vast majority of these minerals are sourced from the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC). The armed groups engaged in mining conflict minerals are both state-sponsored and non-state sponsored, and both domestic and foreign to the DRC. The Congolese National Army itself is a frequent perpetrator of armed conflict and resource looting in pursuit of control over these minerals, and Rwanda, Uganda, and Burundi have all profited from conflict minerals mined in the DRC.  Conflict minerals are used in products worldwide from stoves to smartphones. Poor record keeping and disparate regulations enable armed groups to continue their practices and reap the profits at the expense of local populations. In addition to funding the activities of the armed groups that mine the minerals, conflict minerals are also tied to environmental damage like erosion and pollution and inciting violence between local peoples over access to and control of the mineral deposits.

UN member states unanimously endorsed Guiding Principles for Business and Human Rights in 2011, which obligate states to protect against human rights abuses within their territory, including abuses perpetrated by corporations and other third parties. The Organisation of Economic Co-Operation and Development, comprised of 35 member countries, has also issued guidance on responsible sourcing for companies, which is recognized as an international standard. In addition to these international policies, several states and regional bodies, including the United States, China, the DRC, Rwanda, and the European Union, have adopted regulations governing the use of conflict minerals at the domestic level.

It will be the role of this committee to analyze the existing regulatory framework governing conflict minerals and determine whether it has been successful to-date. The committee should also consider whether additional regulation is needed at the international level, and/or whether more states should be encouraged to adopt domestic regulations.

Useful Links:

UN OHCHR Guiding Principles for Business and Human Rights
https://www.ohchr.org/sites/default/files/Documents/Publications/GuidingPrinciplesBusinessHR_EN.pdf

OECD Due Diligence Guidance for Responsible Supply Chains of Minerals from Conflict-Affected and High-Risk Areas
https://www.oecd.org/corporate/mne/mining.htm

EU Conflict Minerals Regulation Overview
https://policy.trade.ec.europa.eu/development-and-sustainability/conflict-minerals-regulation/regulation-explained_en

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Submitted Position Papers

Gregory Poole 11/24/2023 21:30:30 68.43.180.207

Topic:
Country: Democratic People’s Republic of Korea
Delegate Name: Akshat Jain

SPECIAL POLITICAL COMMITTEE
Impact of Conflict Minerals
Democratic People’s Republic of Korea
Akshat Jain
Forest Hills Northern High School

The Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (North Korea) recognizes the importance of
addressing the impact of conflict minerals on regional stability and global peace. As a sovereign
nation committed to international cooperation, North Korea acknowledges the significance of
responsibly managing the extraction and trade of minerals to promote sustainable development
and prevent the negative consequences associated with conflict minerals.
North Korea is aware of the fact that conflict minerals, including but not limited to tin, tantalum,
tungsten, and gold, have been linked to human rights abuses, environmental degradation, and
the financing of armed groups. The situation is complex, and North Korea understands the
necessity of collaborative efforts to address the root causes and consequences of conflict
mineral trade.
North Korea is committed to improving its internal regulations and oversight mechanisms related
to mineral extraction and trade. The government is taking steps to ensure that the mining
industry adheres to international standards, respects human rights, and avoids contributing to
conflicts. North Korea is open to sharing best practices and experiences with other nations to
foster a cooperative approach to the challenge of conflict minerals.
North Korea emphasizes the importance of international cooperation in addressing the impact of
conflict minerals. The government supports the implementation and adherence to international
frameworks and guidelines, such as the OECD Due Diligence Guidance for Responsible Supply
Chains, to ensure responsible business practices and promote transparency in the mineral
supply chain.
North Korea acknowledges that responsible mineral extraction and trade contribute to economic
development and poverty reduction. The government is committed to ensuring that the benefits
of mineral resources are distributed equitably among the population. Social responsibility
programs will be promoted to mitigate the negative impacts of mining activities on local
communities.
In conclusion, North Korea is dedicated to addressing the impact of conflict minerals through a
comprehensive and cooperative approach. The government recognizes the need for internal
reforms, regional collaboration, and international cooperation to promote responsible mineral
extraction and trade. By working together, the international community can contribute to the
resolution of this complex issue and create a more sustainable and just global mineral supply
chain.

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FHEDelegates 11/22/2023 23:53:55 24.127.84.79

Topic: 2023-Impact of Conflict Minerals
Country: Palestinian Authority
Delegate Name: Ishaan Muchumarri

The issue of conflict minerals plagues the entire global market. Currently, armed militant groups have exploited the natural resources of their environment and the local people present to generate revenue for their own benefit. Though not confined solely to this region, The Democratic Republic of the Congo(DRC) is globally infamous for the control armed militant groups exert over the local populaces. In regions such as the DRC, these armed groups can sell conflict minerals at lower than market costs due to not following the same environmental and ethical regulations in acquiring these minerals. In 2008, the largest producer of Tantalum, an Australian mining company known as Talison Minerals, was forced to shut down due to an inability to compete with operations in Central Africa. These armed groups in the Democratic Republic of the Congo have profited large amounts in their mining operations, with gold mining alone profiting over $1 billion annually and denying the government vital tax dollars to aid its people. This large source of revenue has facilitated what has been considered some of the deadliest conflicts since WW2 in the DRC. Though a large amount of conflict minerals are mined in the Congo, it must be stressed that this is a global issue, in more ways than one. Locations like Afghanistan, Columbia, and Myanmar have been the targets of armed groups for the minerals to be extracted. On the other hand, conflict minerals are a global issue in that they are crucial components of goods used in many countries across the globe, such as cars, smartphones, jewelry, and more. Many consumers purchase these goods while being unaware of the source of the components, and unknowingly fund the militant groups. Though some previous attempts to stop this have been made, a new solution that alleviates the struggles of affected people needs to be found.

Though lacking any resources that are considered conflict minerals in their territory, the Palestinian people are all too familiar with an unwanted party exploiting the resources of their lands and using them for their economic gain. The State of Israel has, numerous times, exploited the rightful resources and materials of the Palestinian people and done so through its abhorrent regime of occupation and apartheid. With exclusive mining permission from the global community, the company ICL Group Ltd. extracts large amounts of Bromine, Potash, and Magnesium from the Dead Sea in occupied Palestinian territory, denying Palestinians $918 million to their economy annually. Furthermore, Israeli settlers and military personnel have, multiple times, clashed with the Palestinian people to attack Palestinian water supplies, which has resulted in the death of several Palestinians over the years. Lastly, the Israeli government has prohibited the Palestinian people from accessing natural gas and oil in Palestinian lands, denying them a crucial source of income. All this together, Palestinians have been exploited for their resources through violent military oppression and have been barred from sharing in the benefits.

The Palestinian Authority hopes to change the situation in areas where conflict minerals are extracted but is hesitant on any solution that ignores alleviating the issues of the people in question. Though the efforts to ensure ethical sourcing of materials and minerals have limited the ability of these armed groups to function, it has done little to alleviate the people in the affected areas. Any solution to this issue needs to involve acquiring approval from the people acquiring/mining the resources in question. At the bare minimum, a solution should mandate a portion of profits be driven towards the wages of the workers to encourage the armed groups to increase the payment and treatment of the people in these regions.

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KalamazooCentralDelegates 11/22/2023 22:46:48 172.58.124.146

Topic: 2023-Impact of Conflict Minerals
Country: United States of America
Delegate Name: Roziya Rustamova

Conflict minerals can be found almost everywhere in our everyday lives, from cars, to phones, and jewelry; these goods are extracted with conflict minerals. These conflict minerals can include anything from gold, tantalum, tin, tungsten and much more. But the thing that makes these minerals conflict is the result it has in funding armed conflicts, human rights abuses, violence, and environmental degradation. The extraction and trade of conflict minerals leads to violation of basic human rights, displacement, and exploitation of vulnerable communities. The United States recognizes the importance of addressing the global issue of conflict minerals, and has worked to implement a regulatory framework aiming at reducing the trade and use of conflict minerals.

The United States has implemented the policy that mandates companies to disclose about products containing conflict minerals, especially tantalum, tin, and gold that are sourced from the Democratic Republic of Congo. This policy was created with a sole purpose of reducing the trade of minerals that finance armed groups, human rights violations, and coming up with a more responsible sourcing. The existing framework governing conflict minerals has promoted transparency and awareness about responsible sourcing practices. But the United States advocates for a more comprehensive approach, that both highlights peace, diplomatic efforts, and addresses the root causes of conflict minerals. It continues to work on improving the issues of conflict minerals both domestically and globally. The United States has actively engaged with UN and has supported UN actions aimed at addressing conflict minerals impacts. Through the use of financial support, and diplomatic engagement, the USA works alongside the United Nations to further improve responsible sourcing, and reduce the exploitation of conflict minerals.

In order to reduce conflict minerals, the USA provides solutions to address the challenges behind conflict minerals and calls for action from the UN. It strongly believes in promoting mineral sourcing through a regularity framework such as the Section 1502 of the Dodd-Frank Act, and encourages companies to disclose the origins of minerals. It also hopes that by combining regulatory measures, and initiates, the USA can further promote ethical mineral sourcing, and reduction of the impact of conflict minerals. The United States also looks forward to working and collaborating with other nations to find a solution for the trade and exploitation of conflict minerals.

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RoyalOakDelegate 11/22/2023 21:44:03 104.176.164.241

Topic: 2023-Impact of Conflict Minerals
Country: Belarus
Delegate Name: Prisha Thakker

11/22/23
Submitted To: Special Political Committee
From: The Republic of Belarus
Subject: Impact Of Conflict Minerals

The Republic of Belarus stands before this esteemed assembly with a solemn recognition of the pressing global issue at hand—the impact of conflict materials. As we gather to deliberate on the multifaceted dimensions of this challenge, it is imperative to acknowledge that the consequences of conflict materials extend far beyond geopolitical boundaries, infiltrating the very fabric of societies and economies. Conflict materials typically refer to natural resources, such as minerals, extracted in conflict zones and contribute to financing armed groups or fueling violence. The most well-known conflict minerals include tantalum, tin, tungsten, and gold, often called the “3TG” minerals. These minerals are commonly used to produce electronics and other consumer goods.
The government of Belarus acknowledges the seriousness of the conflict minerals issue, understanding the potential socioeconomic and geopolitical implications. The extraction and trade of conflict minerals often exacerbate instability in affected regions, leading to economic underdevelopment, displacement of communities, and widespread poverty. Moreover, the revenue generated from the sale of these minerals can finance armed groups, perpetuating cycles of violence and hindering the prospects for sustainable peace. Geopolitically, the illicit trade in conflict minerals can contribute to regional tensions and undermine diplomatic efforts, as neighboring countries may become entangled in the complex web of resource-driven conflicts. The exploitation of these minerals can also strain international relations, with accusations of complicity and ethical concerns impacting bilateral and multilateral partnerships. While recognizing the gravity of the situation, Belarus will remain reserved in direct involvement until the matter unequivocally manifests as a human rights concern. This stance suggests a conditional approach, with a readiness to engage more actively if and when human rights violations directly linked to conflict materials arise, aligning its intervention with a broader human rights framework.

In the context of Belarus, where the issue of conflict minerals has been acknowledged as a matter of concern, addressing child labor becomes especially relevant. To combat child labor in Belarus and globally, it is imperative to foster international collaboration by advocating for increased cooperation through organizations like the International Labour Organization (ILO) and UNICEF. Strengthening and enforcing legislation against child labor and aligning it with international standards is crucial.The extraction and trade of conflict minerals can inadvertently contribute to the exploitation of vulnerable populations, including children, who may be subjected to hazardous working conditions in mining operations. By prioritizing education programs and raising awareness about the consequences of child labor, Belarus aims not only to prevent its occurrence but also to address the root causes such as poverty, often exacerbated by conflicts related to mineral resources. Sustainable economic development, supported by responsible corporate practices and social support services, becomes a critical component of eradicating child labor. Moreover, monitoring and reporting mechanisms will help ensure that the impact of conflict minerals on child labor is continuously assessed and mitigated. Encouraging responsible corporate practices, establishing social support services, and monitoring/reporting mechanisms contribute to a multifaceted approach. Ensuring families have access to humane accommodations and fair wages, coupled with capacity-building initiatives, will create a comprehensive strategy for eradicating child labor and promoting the well-being of vulnerable populations.
Belarus maintains a nuanced stance on the EU Conflict Minerals Regulation (EU 2017/821), which calls for responsible sourcing of 3TG Minerals to prevent support for armed groups and human rights abuses. From our perspective, the stringent requirements imposed by the EU could impact our flourishing mineral trade, a vital component of our national economy. Belarus contends that our existing resource management practices effectively contribute to economic growth and regional stability. While we acknowledge the EU’s commitment to addressing global concerns, we propose a more flexible or region-specific approach that accommodates the unique dynamics of our mineral sector. By emphasizing the positive regional economic spillovers and the collaborative nature of our engagements with neighboring countries, we aim to showcase a responsible and mutually beneficial approach to mineral trade that aligns with broader regional interests, even if diverging from specific EU regulations.
Belarus recognizes the global impact of conflict materials and is eager to address challenges such as child labor actively. Committed to international collaboration through organizations like the ILO and UNICEF, Belarus aims to strengthen legislation, prioritize education, and tackle root causes like poverty. While acknowledging the EU Conflict Minerals Regulation, Belarus proposes a region-specific approach to safeguard its vital mineral trade. Balancing economic interests with global concerns, Belarus is excited about implementing changes that align with regional interests, demonstrating a commitment to eradicating child labor and promoting responsible mineral sourcing for sustainable development and stability.

Works Cited
“Belarus Sanctions Regulations.” Federal Register, 27 March 2023, https://www.federalregister.gov/documents/2023/03/27/2023-06170/belarus-sanctions-regulations. Accessed 20 November 2023.
“Conflict Minerals Regulation: The regulation explained.” Language selection | Trade, https://policy.trade.ec.europa.eu/development-and-sustainability/conflict-minerals-regulation/regulation-explained_en. Accessed 20 November 2023.
“Library | United Nations.” the United Nations, https://www.un.org/en/library. Accessed 20 November 2023.
“Miner’s Wage Rights.” Worker.gov, https://www.worker.gov/miners-wage-rights/. Accessed 20 November 2023.

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RoyalOakDelegate 11/22/2023 21:19:11 108.147.177.19

Topic: 2023-Impact of Conflict Minerals
Country: Ethiopia
Delegate Name: Will McConnell

It should come as no surprise to the people of this committee that Ethiopia–such as our African sister countries–is rich in cobalt, gold, and various other precious metals. For this reason, our nation has had problems with environmental detriment, amongst the other political issues stemming from mining, as seen with the Democratic Republic of the Congo. Because of our problems in the world of mining, this topic is something we care about deeply and hope to find a solution for. Countries such as Ethiopia–as well as the other economically weaker countries of the world–who are rich in minerals and metals have been exploited for too long. It is time to end what far too many of us are far too familiar with.
A significant cause of conflict in regard to mining is the lack of regulation. The part of our nation where this is seen most is in southern-central Ethiopia in an area known as the Guji zone. The Guji zone alone being home to our largest gold mine,the Legadembi mine, has been exploited for materials since the 1920’s and the exploiters’ accountability is still dangerously low, showcasing to us that there are no plans to stop. The Legadembi mine is owned by MIDROC, a company owned by a Saudi Arabian, and their decisions to expand have displaced the indigenous Gujii people ignoring their rights to freedom, prior and informed consent as adopted by the United Nations in 2007. Aside from this, the mining in the Legadembi mine has released many dangerous toxins into the air, causing a spike in flora and fauna deaths, birth deformities, tumors, miscarriages, soil erosion, and the contamination of drinking water.
Beyond this, in recent years–or more specifically, in 2018–gunmen shot and killed five miners in the Ethiopian mine system due to anger regarding the encroachment onto Oromo lands. With the continuation of unregulated mining, more problems such as this will occur. Neither encroachment of land nor the murder of workers are in the best interest of any nation. As a people, we seek safety in our lands; when exploitative mining occurs, we are no longer safe.
One of the most important things we can do to prevent further exploitation is to regulate the ownership of mines and limit it to local or federal government rather than private ownership. No international nor domestic private owner can respect the nation’s needs like the people of and for the nation. Even if the private company is hiring the people of that nation to work and operate the mines, financial decisions are in the hands of those who care more about their wealth than the environmental and health factors of the nation(s) in which they own and/or fund mines.
Furthermore, regulating how much can be mined from each mine per year could be of noticeable importance as well to the overall health of our shared planet. The more regulation we have in place, the less likely are conflicts, health problems, and environmental deterioration.
Finally, the Federal Democratic Republic of Ethiopia is pleased to have the opportunity to discuss our opinions and speak for the people of our nation to a wider demographic of the world.
We are hopeful that, as a committee, we can come together and decide on a solution in accordance with all of our best interests.

Bibliography

Mencho, B. B. (2022). Assessing the effects of gold mining on environment: A case study of Shekiso district, Guji zone, Ethiopia. Heliyon, 8(12), e11882. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.heliyon.2022.e11882

Free, Prior and Informed Consent. (n.d.). Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations. Retrieved November 20, 2023, from https://www.fao.org/indigenous-peoples/our-pillars/fpic/en/

Reuters. (2019, March 19). Gunmen kill five miners in Ethiopia, TV says foreigners among dead. Reuters.https://www.reuters.com/article/us-ethiopia-crime/gunmen-kill-five-miners-in-ethiopia-tv-says-foreigners-among-dead-idUSKCN1R01HD/

Ethiopia: Companies Long Ignored Gold Mine Pollution. (2023, April 26). Human Rights Watch. https://www.hrw.org/news/2023/04/26/ethiopia-companies-long-ignored-gold-mine-pollution

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FHEDelegates 11/22/2023 16:10:20 24.127.84.79

Topic: 2023-Impact of Conflict Minerals
Country: Italy
Delegate Name: Aalyaan Khan

The use of resources extracted by an armed group has spread all around the world for many years. By purchasing resources from these associations, People are funding non-regulated drawing of these resources out of the Earth. These groups have a history of using forced human labor including the use of innocent children. Countries keep purchasing resources from these groups which hurts the long term goals to get rid of these groups and stop the unrestricted mining. By not regulating the importing of minerals from countries the the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC), people around the world are aiding unrestricted extraction of conflict minerals.

Italy observes the need to take action on the purchase and trade of unrestricted extracted minerals. Italy is a part of the Organization For Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD). This organization promotes and creates policies that are standards for sustainable economic growth. Italy has supported the research of the industry and if they meet the recommendations of the OECD guidance. The EU has established regulations for the supply and importing using due diligence for the consumers and buyers of these minerals. These rules and regulations make sure that importers carefully choose where they purchase their gold, tin, tungsten, etc. The human rights of the people in these groups are very important to Italy and a major reason to stop the growth and exporting of conflict minerals.

Italy proposes that all minerals imported have official government documentation proving their extraction by authorized, government approved foundations. This rule is helping support basic human rights and to stop the usage of child and coerced labor. Second, To promote and enforce the due diligence rule and remind countries to be cautious on where they buy their minerals. Italy will be reminding countries about the new law and will be strictly following it. This change will result in better human treatment in the mining industry in conflict countries and more economic stability because it is all recorded by the exporting countries. It is important for countries to follow this new law to better these countries and the world.

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FHEDelegates 11/22/2023 16:01:17 24.127.84.79

Topic: 2023-Impact of Conflict Minerals
Country: India
Delegate Name: Shriya Nallan Chakravarthi

From computers to cars, most goods are tainted with conflict minerals. Daily goods are tainted with human rights abuses, environmental degradation, and cruel violence. India has identified 30 minerals that are crucial for its survival, including cobalt, lithium, nickel, and the 3TGs (Tin, tantalum, tungsten, gold). Evidence warns that a majority of these minerals are sourced under armed forces. The Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD), the Enough Project, European Union (EU), and the US Geological Survey have advocated for greater transparency, but more action is critical for greater effectiveness and aiding nations who depend on these minerals.

India is controlling its own internal conflict with the Maoist insurgency, also known as the Naxalites, who mine coal, bauxite, and iron deposits with forced labor. In recent years, the government has intensified its counter-insurgency initiatives to curb the party’s influence. The Naxalites are barred from exporting minerals internationally under law, but some companies may use conflict minerals, whether from the Naxalites or imported from elsewhere. India adheres to the principles OECD Due Diligence Guidance for Responsible Business Conduct, which helps enterprises avoid using conflict minerals and increase transparency on where enterprises source their minerals. These helpful recommendations are still recommendations nonetheless, and are not enforced in nations. Thus, India created its National Mineral Policy (NMP) in 2019. India’s NMP promotes sustainable mining practices and levels the playing field through business transparency. These regulations have been largely implemented domestically. Currently, India also takes inspiration from the EU regulations on conflict minerals (2021) The EU regulations focus on the four minerals that are most likely to be linked with armed conflicts, the 3TGs. These regulations directly affect EU companies that source minerals internationally, including mineral exports from India. Importers are must identify smelters in their supply chain and ensure they follow the due diligence practices. Indirectly, however, the regulations aim to foster responsible sourcing internationally. The effectiveness of these goals is limited; the EU has not achieved notable impact in supply chains or in producing countries. The EU regulations have effectively pushed Indian companies to become more transparent with their mineral sourcing.

Due to the limited effectiveness of the regulations, the Republic of India would like to see a greater enforcement of business transparency and mining regulations to limit support of armed forces mining conflict minerals. This could be through the creation of a sub committee to deal with implementing existing framework internationally along with creating new framework and regulations as needed. Additionally, India urges the United Nations to focus more resources on stopping the specific groups involved in mining conflict minerals. Stopping these groups ends the uncountable human right abuses, environmental decay, and lethal violence.

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FHEDelegates 11/22/2023 15:55:27 24.127.84.79

Topic: 2023-Impact of Conflict Minerals
Country: Sudan
Delegate Name: Shephard Bower

A “conflict mineral” is defined as a mineral often mined in an area of armed conflict and traded illegally in order to fund the fighting. These conflict minerals include gold, columbite-tantalite (coltan), cassiterite, tungsten, and wolframite, with most of them being mined in Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC). Nations including The DRC, Rwanda, Uganda and Burundi have all reaped profit from these minerals. Conflict minerals are used in products all around the world. Poor record keeping and different regulations allow armed forces to continue mining conflict minerals and take all profits at the expense of the local population of these nations. Most UN member states endorsed Guiding Principles for Business and Human Rights in 2011, which requires states to protect against human rights abuses that have occurred in their territory, including abuses from corporations and third parties. The Organisation of Economic Co-Operation and Development (OECD), made up of 35 member states, has also issued guidance on responsible sourcing and extracting to companies and corporations. Many nations have additionally adopted regulations regarding the use of conflict minerals.

Sudan has faced challenges involving conflict minerals, and many regions have experienced the illegal extraction of conflict minerals in Sudan. Currently, Sudan is experiencing the extraction of conflict minerals by the Rapid Support Forces (RSF). This extraction leads to regional instability throughout Sudan. Also, the extraction of conflict minerals only fuels the armed conflicts that are currently occurring all around the world by funding the armed forces in the conflicts. This only hinders efforts made for peace. Conflict minerals have also lead to child labor and exploitation in Sudan and many other African nations. Sudan recognizes the immense measures needed to tackle this issue, including more intense regulation of conflict minerals, measures to improve traceability of extraction, and cooperation between member states.

In order to reduce the impact of conflict minerals, Sudan proposes a solution that calls for action from the UN. Sudan believes that more intense regulations placed on the extraction of conflict minerals is necessary to reduce the impact they have on many countries. Sudan calls for the development and improvement of traceability measures in order to help monitor the extraction of all mineral. The measures taken will ensure that less groups will get away with mining conflict minerals. Sudan hopes for the UN to impose sanctions on all groups found guilty of mining conflict minerals illegally. These sanctions will help decrease the funding of armed forces in order to try and stop armed conflicts. Finally, Sudan supports collaboration with neighboring countries and regions to help establish standards and regulations for responsible sourcing of minerals. Sudan looks forward to collaborating with its fellow delegates in order to find a solution for the extraction and use of conflict minerals.

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EastGrandRapidsDelegates 11/22/2023 13:24:34 107.4.29.194

Topic: 2023-Impact of Conflict Minerals
Country: Russian Federation
Delegate Name: Ella Duffner

A mineral is referred to as a conflict mineral when, in politically unstable areas, armed groups use forced labor to mine it. Often these conflict minerals can be found in mobile phones, cars, and jewelry and can be extracted all over the world. A conflict-free mineral is considered a mineral extracted that does not directly or indirectly benefit armed groups. Conflict minerals are commonly tin, tantalum, tungsten, and gold ore concentrate or metal, also known as 3TGs. Many laws and certification standards now exist to hold companies responsible, and while this is a global issue, it is imperative that domestic governments are allowed to solve these issues within their own borders. National collaboration on solutions and policies in regard to these issues will not be ignored, but national governments must not be undermined in the discussion of this issue.

While some encourage more states to adopt domestic policies in relation to the issue of conflict minerals, all that can be done is encouraged. The United Nations Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights, which apply to all States and business enterprises, currently sets a clear precedent on the State’s jurisdiction to prevent human rights abuse within their territories, of which the Russian Federation stands with. The OECD Due Diligence Guidance for Responsible Supply Chains of Minerals from Conflict-Affected and High-Risk Areas is also currently in place, which applies to companies to avoid contribution to conflict through conflict mineral purchases. While the Russian Federation is a non-member economy of the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development, a working relationship exists between the Russian Federation and the OECD.

The Russian Federation believes it is imperative that respective governments be allowed to handle conflict mineral issues within their countries without being undermined by the policies created nationally. It is also important that people negatively affected by this issue as well as the environment must be taken into consideration, but domestic governments must be allowed to do this under the current working policies in solutions already in place.

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Celia Kaechele 11/22/2023 12:58:14 76.192.146.195

Topic: 2023-Impact of Conflict Minerals
Country: Turkey
Delegate Name: Brooklyn Rahmaan Bexler

Turkey recognizes the urgency of addressing the issue of conflict minerals, which poses significant challenges to global peace and stability. As a nation committed to ethical trade practices and sustainable development, Turkey acknowledges the importance of finding comprehensive and collaborative solutions to mitigate the impact of conflict minerals on affected regions.

Understanding the historical context of conflict minerals is essential for crafting effective solutions. Turkey acknowledges the devastating consequences of the illicit trade in conflict minerals, which often funds armed groups and perpetuates violence. Turkey calls for a nuanced approach that considers the historical and socio-economic factors contributing to the issue.

Turkey is committed to responsible and ethical sourcing of minerals. We believe in supporting local communities and ensuring that the extraction and trade of minerals contribute to sustainable development. Turkey emphasizes the need for transparent supply chains and responsible business practices to prevent the proliferation of conflict minerals.

Turkey has actively supported UN initiatives aimed at addressing the challenges posed by conflict minerals. We recognize the importance of international cooperation in implementing and enforcing regulations that curb the trade in conflict minerals. Turkey has consistently contributed to peacekeeping efforts in regions affected by conflicts fueled by mineral resources.

Turkey advocates for enhanced international cooperation to tackle the issue of conflict minerals. We propose the establishment of a multilateral framework that involves governments, industry stakeholders, and civil society. This framework should focus on sharing information, coordinating efforts, and implementing effective measures to trace and monitor the trade in conflict minerals.

Turkey believes in the importance of empowering local communities to resist the influence of armed groups involved in the illicit mineral trade. We propose initiatives that focus on capacity building, education, and the development of alternative livelihoods for communities affected by conflict minerals. By addressing the root causes, we can contribute to sustainable peace and development.

Turkey supports the implementation of robust traceability and certification mechanisms for mineral supply chains. We propose the development of international standards that ensure transparency and accountability in the extraction, processing, and trade of minerals. Certification programs should involve all relevant stakeholders to guarantee the credibility of the process.

Turkey acknowledges that addressing the issue of conflict minerals requires careful consideration of various concerns, including economic implications and the potential for unintended consequences. We are open to dialogue and collaboration to refine proposed solutions and ensure a balanced and effective approach.

Turkey reiterates its commitment to contributing to global efforts to address the issue of conflict minerals. By promoting responsible sourcing, international cooperation, and sustainable development, Turkey believes we can create a world where minerals contribute to prosperity rather than conflict. Turkey stands ready to work collaboratively with the international community to implement solutions that foster peace, stability, and ethical trade practices.

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Celia Kaechele 11/22/2023 12:48:56 76.192.146.195

Topic: 2023-Impact of Conflict Minerals
Country: Japan
Delegate Name: Goni Wong

Conflict Minerals and the human rights abuses that brutal warlords facilitate for the extraction of rare earth minerals must cease to exist. In the Great Lakes region, a known hotbed for these practices sourcing conflict minerals, there have been upwards of 5.4 million civilian deaths. Additionally In 2014, UNICEF reported that about 40,000 children worked in mines in the south of the Democratic Republic of Congo, with this figure having likely increased significantly since 2014. Of the 800,000 people that are able to flee this war torn area, many find themselves in poor living conditions or refugee camps. The circumstances that allow for these violations of human rights, especially in the Great Lakes region, are not circumstantial by any means. As warlords exploit the extraction of these minerals, they also control the smuggling routes across borders, most notably those of the DRC, Uganda and Rwanda. These are then given to intermediaries who turn a blind eye to the legality of their trade as long as they make profit. It ends up being smelted down with other legally extracted minerals in Asian, North American and European nations, rendering them virtually untraceable. Finally it is bought by large companies in a host of nations to be processed and distributed to consumers across the globe. The cycle that facilitates the murder, rape and forced labor of civilians across the Democratic Republic of Congo and neighboring countries can be broken. This terrible and unending cycle of violence can be stopped at many points in the process, where if you were to render one area of this sequence of transactions useless, you could bring about the demise of the system as a whole.

This being said, United Nations involvement on this issue has had minimal efficiency and we require new solutions to address this tragic crisis.

Japan understands the human rights abuses that occur as a result of conflict minerals, and firmly believes they must be addressed. Japan has ratified and adopted many international conventions on Child Labor laws and has begun to implement regulations against the use of conflict minerals within Japan. As a leader in modern production of sustainable practices and devices, Japan looks for innovative solutions that not only address the humanitarian crisis in the Great Lakes region, but the issue of climate change as well. As our world comes ever closer to climate disaster, many countries including the island nation of Japan must effectively combat the multitude of challenges that arise from a warming climate, rising sea levels, and more severe natural disasters. To reach carbon neutrality and increase the use of sustainable devices, many of the minerals mined in the Great Lakes region, such as cobalt, gold, Titanium, Tin and Tungsten must be more widely available to companies and nations. Solutions that Japanese companies have pioneered are a method for separating high-purity cobalt from old lithium-ion batteries. The plan is to use the recycled mineral in new EV batteries, this would reduce the reliance on conflict minerals. Additionally Japan unconditionally supports any forms of humanitarian aid to assist displaced individuals and combat sexual violence, killing and child labor within afflicted areas.

In conclusion, minerals that support the development of technologies that contribute to sustainability and climate neutrality must be sourced responsibly, adhering to ethical and sustainable guidelines that are outlined in the UN charter and adjacent institutions.

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KalamazooCentralDelegates 11/22/2023 10:51:48 45.16.145.246

Topic: 2023-Impact of Conflict Minerals
Country: Democratic People’s Republic of Korea
Delegate Name: Ava Balint

Special Political
Republic of Korea
Ava Balint
Topic A: Conflict Minerals

The four main Conflict minerals consist of (3TGs, Tin, Tantalum, Tungsten, Uranium and Gold) mined in 10 African countries such as Democratic Republic of the Congo, Congo, Central African Republic, South Sudan, Uganda, etc. These conflict minerals are obtained through armed groups transporting and trading minerals through inhuman practices. These minerals are critical for worldwide use of the production of jewelry, cellphones, computers, explosives, medical equipment, and vehicles. Unfortunately, conflict minerals are obtained through cruel and harsh practices and are present knowingly and unknowingly in the supply chain.
South Korea has a zero-tolerance policy for conflict minerals. To prevent the usage of conflict minerals, as they are unknowingly in the supply chain, South Korea has implemented a Supply Chain Management Process with a simple 5-step prevention process. This process consists of raising awareness to partner companies, investigating the conflict materials in the supply chain, systematic due diligence and verification of results, identifying and assessing risk within the supply chain, developing a risk improvement plan and reporting relevant information. This process was introduced after the U.S congress, in 2010, made it mandatory to report the use of conflict materials.
South Korea believes that a simple supply chain management process being implemented in other countries would be highly beneficial. This would reduce the inhuman practices of child labor and human right violations used to obtain these conflict minerals. Furthermore, South Korea feels threatened by the usage of conflict minerals, such as Uranium, that is continuously used to make explosives by North Korea. South Korea hopes that fellow and neighboring countries will take this into consideration of limiting their usage of conflict minerals.

1. Conflict minerals policy – korea zinc. (n.d.). https://www.koreazinc.co.kr/files/contents/download/KZ_Conflict_Minerals_Policy.pdf
2. Conflict minerals. EcoVadis. (2020, February 28). https://ecovadis.com/glossary/conflict-minerals/#:~:text=They%20provided%20a%20 major%20source,%2C%20 computers%2C%20 jewelry%20and%20 vehicles
3. Poole, G. (2023, September 11). Home. GLICA.org. https://glica.org/glica-conferences/glimun-2023-conference/glimun-2023-committees/conflict-minerals/

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Kaycee Duffey 11/22/2023 10:28:44 98.224.163.17

Topic: 2023-Impact of Conflict Minerals
Country: Ukraine
Delegate Name: Benjamin Pease

Committee: Special Political Committee
Topic A: Impact of Conflict Minerals
Country: Ukraine
Name: Benjamin Pease
School: Forest Hills Northern High School

Millions of people worldwide are affected by mining conflict minerals, which are mostly tungsten, tantalum, tin, gold, and cobalt. These minerals are widely distributed and utilized worldwide in many products, especially consumer electronics, which use such metals in circuit boards and other components. Conflict minerals are often extracted or extorted by armed groups, often through forced labor. They are also tied to environmental damage through erosion and pollution from mining. However, many people in the states where conflicted minerals are extracted rely on the industry to make a living. In the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC), the World Bank estimates that 10 million Congolese depend on artisanal mining to support their livelihoods.
In 2011, the United Nations addressed the growing issue of conflict mineral extraction by creating the Guiding Principles for Business and Human Rights, which provided a framework for enhancing business and human rights standards and practices. Along with the UN, the Organisation of Economic Co-Operation and Development has also issued guidance on sourcing conflict minerals responsibility. Along with international institutions, states and regional bodies have created domestic guidelines for utilizing conflict minerals, such as the United States with legislation in the Dodd-Frank Act and the European Union’s Conflict Minerals Regulation. Most of these regulations aim to promote the ethical sourcing of conflict minerals to ensure that the sources of the minerals are not violating human rights. Many individual companies have also created guidelines about utilizing conflict minerals; however, they often, out of necessity, continue sourcing their conflict minerals from unverified mines and refineries.
Because of Ukraine’s vast mineral deposits, it also understands the importance of minerals to a national economy. Ukraine does not directly deal with conflict minerals; however, like every country, it still utilizes the many products that contain conflict minerals. Previously, it has agreed to the regulations laid out in the Guiding Principles and has ambitions to join the OECD and European Union, conforming to the rules set out by both organizations.
Nonetheless, it acknowledges the large-scale impact the industry can have on human rights. It understands the importance of mineral extraction for both local and national economies. It advises the UN to continue to advocate for more regional regulations, as seen with the European Union and the United States, to ensure that nobody furthers the human rights violations resulting from doing business with unverified suppliers. These more focused regulations could enforce supply chain transparency, requiring companies to disclose the origin of the minerals they use, or it could include a certification system that would involve implementing due diligence measures to ensure that minerals entering the market are conflict-free. It also proposes that the UN create an initiative to increase public awareness and educate consumers worldwide about the impact of conflict minerals. Naturally, this would help create demand for products free from conflict minerals and pressure companies to ensure responsible mineral supply chains.

European Commission. “Conflict Minerals Regulation: The Regulation Explained.” Trade, 2021, policy.trade.ec.europa.eu/development-and-sustainability/conflict-minerals-regulation/regulation-explained_en.
OECD. “OECD Due Diligence Guidance for Responsible Supply Chains of Minerals from Conflict-Affected and High-Risk Areas – OECD.” Www.oecd.org, 2016, www.oecd.org/corporate/mne/mining.htm.
World Bank. PROJECT INFORMATION DOCUMENT (PID) CONCEPT STAGE. 24 Mar. 2009, documents1.worldbank.org/curated/en/341011468234300132/pdf/Project0Inform1cument1Concept0Stage.pdf. Accessed 20 Nov. 2023.

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Kaycee Duffey 11/21/2023 23:46:18 99.55.246.253

Topic: 2023-Impact of Conflict Minerals
Country: Finland
Delegate Name: Charlotte Dykstra

Committee: SPECPOL
Topic: Impact of Conflict Minerals
Country: The Republic of Finland
Delegate: Charlotte Dykstra, FH Northern HS

Conflict minerals, often sourced from regions with a history of armed conflict and human rights abuses, have become integral parts of several industries. These minerals, according to the United Therapeutics Corporation (UT), include cassiterite, columbite-tantalite, gold, wolframite, and their derivatives, which are limited to tantalum, tin, and tungsten. Conflict minerals contribute to the financing of several armed groups and the continuation of forced labor, which only further perpetuates violence and human suffering in these regions.

As an advocate for peace and sustainable development, the Republic of Finland recognizes the pressing issue of conflict minerals and their detrimental impact on global stability. Finland currently supports existing regulations, such as the EU’s Conflict Minerals Regulation and the OECD Due Diligence Guidance for Responsible Supply Chains. Both frameworks promote responsible sourcing practices. Finland also promotes regional cooperation and responsible sourcing in line with ICGLR (International Conference on the Great Lakes Region) efforts.

Although Finland acknowledges the importance of regulatory practices and supports initiatives taken by the UN and other international organizations to place restrictions on conflict minerals, Finland also recognizes the potential economic backlash of harsh restrictive practices. The Republic of Finland emphasizes the importance of balancing the ethical need to address human rights concerns with economic considerations when crafting effective policies.

Finland is aware of the need for international cooperation on this issue and the UN’s obligation to present an international response on the regulatory policies regarding conflict minerals. The delegation of Finland proposes the establishment of a collaborative platform in which various stakeholders, countries, and other organizations can coordinate efforts to address the root causes of conflict mineral trade. Finland also advocates for increased transparency in supply chains, with companies disclosing information about the sourcing of their minerals. Transparency within various industries will allow consumers to make informed decisions and create incentives for businesses to make ethical decisions regarding minerals.

The Republic of Finland is committed to addressing the impact of conflict minerals through a balanced and cooperative approach. While recognizing the need for regulations, Finland emphasizes the importance of considering the negative economic impacts that could occur as a result. The delegation of Finland strongly believes that by working together, the international community can build a more sustainable and ethical framework regarding conflict minerals.

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WilliamstonDelegates 11/21/2023 22:41:27 98.97.6.246

Topic: 2023-Impact of Conflict Minerals
Country: Ghana
Delegate Name: Kate Petersburg

Committee: General Assembly
Topic: Impact of Conflict Minerals
Country: Ghana
Delegate: Kate Petersburg
School: Williamston High School

Minerals are used around the world in many different things such as jewelry, currency, computers, electronics and medicine. Many mines produce conflict minerals illegally and don’t follow environmental regulations or protect human rights and can often lead to inhumane labor practices, employee injury or death, theft, and even murder and rape. Most conflict minerals are mined in th Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) and many countries profit from these issues. In fact in 2022 around 51% of companies stated that their conflict minerals could have come from the DRC or surrounding countries.

Ghana’s main area of conflict mineral production lies with gold. Ghana’s Gold output over just the last 20 years has spiked tremendously but it has also caused major issues. To fight these issues Ghana has worked with many NGOs to combat the issue of the miners livelihood such as trying to enhance control, improve monitoring, legalization, and registration however it is struggling due to the fact that these operations have been working illegally for a while. In fact the Ghanaian government has failed their goals in regulating the mining sector as of now. The Wacam is still currently working to push for better rights for the miners. There is also the issue of land ownership in Ghana.

Ghana has many plans in the future to help with the negative impacts of conflict minerals mostly under Wacam, which is an NGO specifically there to improve the lives of miners in Ghana. Wacam is currently working in over 90 mining affected areas and wishes to spread further with the main goal being to start a social movement to influence better conditions for workers especially miners. Another main task is to enforce the Free, Prior and Informed Consent (FPIC) and the Polluter Pays Principles (PPP) policies. These will help the workers know exactly what kind of work they are signing up for and make environmentally friendly mines pay.

Cited evidence

1. “Ghana – Mining Industry Equipment.” International Trade Administration | Trade.Gov, www.trade.gov/country-commercial-guides/ghana-mining-industry-equipment. Accessed 21 Nov. 2023.
1. “Ghana – Mining Industry Equipment.” International Trade Administration | Trade.Gov, www.trade.gov/country-commercial-guides/ghana-mining-industry-equipment. Accessed 21 Nov. 2023.
Author links open overlay panelKayla Patel, et al. “Evaluating Conflict Surrounding Mineral Extraction in Ghana: Assessing the Spatial Interactions of Large and Small-Scale Mining.” The Extractive Industries and Society, Elsevier, 19 Feb. 2016, www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/abs/pii/S2214790X16300065.
“Goal of Strategy.” WACAM, www.wacamgh.org/goals/. Accessed 21 Nov. 2023.
Innovations, ADEC. “The Impact of Conflict Minerals on Business – ADEC ESG.” ADEC ESG Solutions, www.adecesg.com/resources/blog/the-impact-of-conflict-minerals-on-business/#:~:text=and%20electrical%20wiring.-,Cadmium%20is%20a%20main%20ingredient%20of%20batteries.,a%20location%20unsuitable%20for%20business. Accessed 21 Nov. 2023.
Kaechele, Celia, and Gregory Poole. “Home.” GLICA.Org, GLICA.org, 18 Nov. 2023, glica.org/glica-conferences/glimun-2023-conference/glimun-2023-committees/conflict-minerals/.
Musamba, Josaphat, et al. “The Problem with ‘Conflict Minerals.’” Dissent Magazine, 22 Oct. 2021, www.dissentmagazine.org/online_articles/the-problem-with-conflict-minerals/.
Office, U.S. Government Accountability. “Conflict Minerals: 2022 Company Reports on Mineral Sources Were Similar to Those Filed in Prior Years.” Conflict Minerals: 2022 Company Reports on Mineral Sources Were Similar to Those Filed in Prior Years | U.S. GAO, www.gao.gov/products/gao-23-106295. Accessed 21 Nov. 2023.
“The United Nations in Ghana in Ghana.” United Nations, United Nations, ghana.un.org/en/about/about-the-un. Accessed 21 Nov. 2023.
Yiridomoh, Gordon Yenglier. “‘illegal’ Gold Mining Operations in Ghana: Implication for Climate-Smart Agriculture in Northwestern Ghana.” Frontiers, Frontiers, 8 Nov. 2021, www.frontiersin.org/articles/10.3389/fsufs.2021.745317/full.

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FHEDelegates 11/21/2023 21:31:37 24.127.84.79

Topic: 2023-Impact of Conflict Minerals
Country: Kazakhstan
Delegate Name: Calvin Cater

Conflict minerals are referred to as minerals that are mined in conditions of armed conflict and human rights abuse. When talking about this topic, it often refers to the conflicts found in the Democratic Republic of the Congo. This conflict has been fought over precious metals such as tungsten, gold, and tantalum. Child labor is also used, subjecting young children to poor working conditions. Illegal mining techniques cause environmental impacts such as deforestation, soil erosion, and water pollution. The use of toxic chemicals also endangers the health of local communities. The selling of these minerals funds armed groups which perpetuates the violence found within the DRC. These armed groups then use these funds to buy weapons and continue their campaigns of violence. Conflict minerals are exported worldwide and commonly used in the production of electronics and jewelry. The UN has passed multiple resolutions aimed at targeting illicit dealing, however, it has not proved very effective as it “has only sanctioned 31 individuals and companies in five years”. Furthermore, “ The UN’s desultory attempts to police this international trade have foundered on the lack of cooperation by the countries providing a base for the main economic operators and the absence of a legal corpus that is binding on the importing companies”. Kazakhstan mainly imports electronics and cars, which may contain conflict minerals, and are affected.

Kazakhstan as a country has a mixed stance. Kazakhstan has been actively working since 2008 to align itself with the guidelines of the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD). Due to this Kazahtsan would encourage other countries to perform similar reforms. Kazakhstan has made reforms to its own mining industry, which represents a large chunk of its GDP. These developments proved to be successful as currently its market is still projected to grow. However, Kazakhstan has other constraints it must consider. Due to Kazakhstan’s main export being minerals any effect to the global mineral market affects Kazakhstan. In consideration of this Kazasktan must work with its trade partner to ensure economic stability. Kazakhstan’s main trade partners consisting of China and Russia, it consider their views on the matter. Additionally, as country located in Central Asia it must consider the views of its surrounding countries. The culmination of these factors creates an unique stance in which Kazakhstan would promote change, however, it must consider the views of its partners.

Kazakhstan does consider conflict minerals as an issue that the UN needs to solve. As a country participating in the OECD, Kazakhstan believes that other countries should follow the same policies it does. However, as a large importer of electronics Kazakhstan stresses the importance of economic stability in a solution, as it does depend on trade from other nations. Past solutions consisted primarily of boycotting and ended in failure. Kazakhstan before committing to a solution would consider the criteria listed by its partners. Kazakhstan would recommend creating a subcommittee that would focus on supporting the DRC’s current government and removing the current corruption.

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RoyalOakDelegate 11/21/2023 20:49:46 71.136.170.93

Topic: 2023-Impact of Conflict Minerals
Country: Venezuela
Delegate Name: Haley Berry

11/19/23
Submitted To: SPECPOL

Amongst nations considered part of the Global South, the mining of natural minerals has proven to be a vital source of income to developing economies. The presence of such minerals has also served as a vastly unregulated medium across many countries, allowing for foreign powers and domestic factions to exploit such resources for financial gain. The issue of addressing conflict minerals is often centered around the extraction of such resources by armed groups found within the African continent. While these instances, especially the plight of those in the Democratic Republic of Congo, are indeed pressing matters, the extraction of conflict minerals in Latin America should not be overlooked.

From bauxite and coltan, to diamonds and gold, the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela is rich in natural minerals. Unfortunately the extraction of such resources has often occurred under the watch of gangs and guerilla groups known as sindicatos and colectivos. Such illegal mining operations have driven Venezuela’s deforestation rate to be one of the highest in Latin America, destroying thousands of hectares of the Amazon rainforest each year. These gang-affiliated groups often levy taxes on local indigenous mining communities and use subversive labor practices to extract as many valuable minerals, namely gold, as possible. The administration of Nicolás Maduro seeks to address the rapid deforestation caused by illegal mining in efforts to promote principles of ‘eco-socialism’ while finding other alternatives to funding government operations, which have been stunted by an economic war waged by the United States of America.
In 2014, a dramatic decrease in global oil prices crippled the Venezuelan economy in ways unimaginable. The nationalization of oil under the administration of supreme commander Hugo Chavéz created a great improvement in the quality of life for the Venezuelan people, bringing in billions in profit. However, following the death of Chavéz and the election of Nicolás Maduro, the United States almost immediately imposed needless economic sanctions on oil and gold exports out of political spite. Such sanctions have effectively cut off Venezuela from the international market, and it is the intention of the Maduro administration to reintegrate the nation politically and economically. The substantial sanctions on oil have driven Venezuela to seek mineral extraction as a substitute for income, and gold now finances the Maduro administration.

This new dependence on gold extraction has revealed many issues within the systems of mining in Venezuela, stemming from the policies of Hugo Chavéz, known as Chavismo. The nationalization of many resources and the abatement of private sectors unfortunately made deregulation of many industries rampant, and government oversight became less frequent, ultimately attributing to the high levels of illegal mining present in many areas, namely national parks in the states of Amazonas and Bolívar. The Arco Minero, or the Orinoco Mining Arc is the primary source of illegal mining operations, spanning one of the most biodiverse areas of the Amazon rainforest. Within this region is the Yapacana National Park, where the Venezuelan government recently began engaging with illegal miners in Operation Bolivarian Shield Autana 2023, an effort to stunt illegal mining and restore destroyed areas of the Amazon. As of July 1, 2023, the Fuerzas Armadas Revolucionarias de Colombia (FANB) has evicted more than 12,000 illegal miners. In a press conference, FANB general Domingo Hernández Lárez expressed, “They [illegal miners] have been evicted voluntarily and their wellbeing attended to. They understood that nothing will prevail over environmental rights.” Albeit drastic, such measures must be taken in order to most efficiently tackle unregulated mining activities. Once illegal miners have been entirely evacuated, the Maduro administration plans to begin the restoration program, specifically cleaning up the mercury that is used in mining processes, which has largely polluted local water systems.

Venezuela believes that in addressing conflict minerals, the remaining environmental impact and restoration should also be taken into consideration. Regarding the aspect of armed groups being involved in the extraction of these minerals, Venezuela hopes that the focus centers not only around the violations of human rights and labor practices that can be found in these mining zones, but the role that the Western world plays in facilitating such abuses. Despite U.S. efforts to sanction and ban Venezuelan gold from the international market, much of it becomes formalized and is still sold in the U.S., Middle East, Europe, and Africa. This highlights a crucial flaw in the mineral trade, in which minerals extracted from illicit mines are put under no further review, and the origin of the resources are not taken into question. Such hypocrisy allows Western nations to politically condemn such practices while they economically benefit from them. Sanctions are a piddling excuse for the continuation of a destructive cycle that hurts the pride and welfare of the Venezuelan people.

In a tumultuous economy with an inflation rate that has surpassed 1,000,000% within the last year, any approach to the topic at hand will require short-term solutions to alleviate suffering, as this style of decision making has become so prevalent in Venezuelan culture. Humanitarian aid is well overdue, and the UN mustn’t delay. Despite approval by both the Maduro administration and the opposition, there has been a stall in the creation of a fund for aid that was to be created with Venezuelan governmental funds that had been frozen overseas. Such a hindrance will only exacerbate the current humanitarian crisis, and thousands of Venezuelans will continue to remain impoverished without access to adequate sources of income as security operations on illegal mines continue. To prevent an overdependence on mineral resources, sanctions on both Venezuelan oil and gold must be lifted. If the West is to be held accountable for their part in worsening this crisis, more nations should consider adopting the World Gold Council’s ‘Conflict-Free Gold Standard’, which gives guidance for discerning the supply chain origins of gold, potentially from conflict zones. The adoption of voluntary frameworks such as the Kimberly Process, a multi-sectoral alliance designed to reduce the trafficking of conflict diamonds, should also be reconsidered for implementation.

Ultimately, efforts to solve the issue of conflict minerals will require the support and compliance of the nations producing such minerals and those who actively benefit from them. What nations afflicted by the presence of armed groups need from developed nations is not pity and unenforced policies on paper, but legitimate and tangible action that has immediate effect. Any thousands of grams of gold are worthless when compared to the thousands of lives lost to forced labor and grueling mining conditions that it took to retrieve those minerals. Swift measures must be taken to minimize further distress, and the nation of Venezuela eagerly awaits collaboration and dialogue with other impacted nations in this committee to best address the situation.

Bibliography

“Conflict-Free Gold Standard.” World Gold Council, https://www.gold.org/industry-standards/conflict-free-gold. Accessed 19 November 2023.

Diaz, Emilia, and Joseph Poliszuk. “Venezuela emerges as new source of ‘conflict’ minerals.” Center for Public Integrity, 4 March 2012, https://publicintegrity.org/accountability/venezuela-emerges-as-new-source-of-conflict-minerals/. Accessed 19 November 2023.

“Gold and Grief in Venezuela’s Violent South.” Crisis Group, 28 February 2019, https://www.crisisgroup.org/latin-america-caribbean/andes/venezuela/073-gold-and-grief-venezuelas-violent-south. Accessed 19 November 2023.

“OECD Due Diligence Guidance for Responsible Supply Chains of Minerals from Conflict-Affected and High-Risk Areas.” OECD, https://www.oecd.org/corporate/mne/mining.htm. Accessed 19 November 2023.

“Venezuela Security Policy: Illegal Mining and Deforestation.” InSight Crime, 5 July 2023, https://insightcrime.org/news/criminal-threats-venezuela-illegal-mining/. Accessed 19 November 2023.

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Kaycee Duffey 11/21/2023 20:30:46 76.139.243.203

Topic: 2023-Impact of Conflict Minerals
Country: Cuba
Delegate Name: Breck Suvedi

Delegate: Breck Suvedi
Committee: SPECPOL
Topic: Impact of Conflict Minerals
Country: Republic of Cuba
School: Northern High School

Conflict minerals have always been very controversial. Conflict minerals are some of the most valuable minerals that go into many of your everyday electronics. Many of these conflict minerals are being mined in central Africa. Countries like the DRC have 24 trillion dollars worth of untapped minerals. Many small unaffiliated groups mine these minerals but then that money goes towards funding terrorist groups. The other problem is that many of these small unaffiliated groups use child labor and forced labor which leads to humanitarian concerns. They are mining mainly gold, tungsten, tantalum, and tin. These are some of the main minerals used to make phone batteries and many other different electronics. Big tech companies like Apple want these vital minerals but they don’t know how to check if the minerals were produced without forced labor.
Cuba believes that conflict minerals should be mined but with extreme caution. Conflict minerals like gold, tungsten, tantalum, and tin are mostly produced using child or forced labor. Mining these conflict minerals are helpful because they go into your everyday electronics, but we have to make sure forced labor is not being used to produce these minerals. The profits from mining these minerals have gone to druglords and warlords that fuel the violence in the DRC that has led the DRC to be an unsafe place for years. Cuba wants to make sure that we provide a solution to this unsettling problem that is done in an ethical way that does not further put countries in central Africa to harm. These conflict minerals are one of the few things that fueling the DRC and their economy.
The first step that the Republic of Cuba will make is one that will be hardest to implement but will be worth it the most in the long run. The first step that Cuba will take is to work cohesively and rigorously with the UN and the DRC to make sure that we ensure that no illegal workers have been used to produce these minerals. Once we have done that we can then work together to put a better central government system in place that will lead to a safe place for the workers and their buyers. This ensures that we can be confident about where our minerals are coming from and we can be confident that they are being produced humanely and ethically.
Cuba recognizes that there is no easy solution or policy that will properly solve the growing ambitions of the world surrounding the impending issue of conflict minerals to prevent more damage to Central America and its people. Cuba believes that solving this issue is necessary to prevent more conflict from brewing in countries like the DRC. Countries with an interest in the area of conflict minerals must take action soon to ensure that there are no more innocent lives wasted away from this issue. The Republic of Cuba calls on the nations of Argentina, Ukraine, United Arab Emirates, Gabon, Finland, North Korea, and Albania to ensure their priorities are in the best interest of the world as a whole. Furthermore, Cuba looks forward to working with all of these other nations and all other interested parties to create a cohesive solution in order to tackle this pervasive issue.

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Kaycee Duffey 11/21/2023 18:28:04 12.74.55.39

Topic: 2023-Impact of Conflict Minerals
Country: United arab Emirates
Delegate Name: Sanjna Bijoy

The mineral trades in the United Arab Emirates are often overlooked in the discourse surrounding conflict minerals, but should not be dismissed. The UAE is typically not linked to areas of armed conflict or human rights violations, however, it is important to examine this trade with scrutiny to fully comprehend the moral complications and future effects.
Importing and exporting various minerals, the UAE is a significant participant in the worldwide mineral trade. The mineral supply chain’s broad trading network raises questions about the source and sourcing methods of minerals it receives, although conflict minerals aren’t exclusively related to the UAE. Identifying possible ethical issues necessitates identifying problematic regions in the mineral supply chain.
A review of the regulatory environment reveals existing measures to combat conflict minerals. The UAE’s commitment to responsible business practices and international standards will determine its effectiveness in mitigating the impact of conflict minerals. A critical analysis of existing regulations and their enforcement mechanisms is crucial to assess the country’s readiness to address this global problem.
The ethical dimensions of the UAE’s mineral trade cannot be ignored. Understanding the potential human costs associated with conflict minerals, even indirect costs, requires careful examination of humanitarian impacts. Real-world examples and case studies illustrate the ethical implications of the UAE’s mineral trade and its links to conflict zones.
The economic impact of dealing with conflict minerals goes beyond ethical considerations. Companies operating in the UAE face risks to their reputation and international partnerships. Economic impact assessments are critical to both the private and public sectors and influence decision-making and strategic planning for mineral trade.
A corporate responsibility survey has revealed the role of UAE companies in ensuring ethical mineral sourcing. A detailed analysis of corporate social responsibility initiatives and responsible supply chain practices provides insight into how UAE companies are contributing to ethical mineral trade. Case studies can highlight exemplary practices and areas that may need improvement.
To address the impact of conflict minerals, recommendations should focus on improving regulations, improving enforcement mechanisms and promoting responsible business practices. International cooperation and proposals to promote ethical mineral trade can help mitigate the global impact of conflict minerals.
Uncovering the impact of conflict minerals in the UAE requires a multidimensional approach. By rigorously examining regulatory frameworks, ethical considerations, economic impacts and corporate responsibility, stakeholders can work together to create a more responsible and ethical minerals trade in the UAE. This path includes not only compliance with regulations, but also a commitment to ethical business practices that are consistent with global standards and humanitarian values. As the UAE continues to play an important role in the global minerals trade, its proactive stance on conflict minerals will undoubtedly help promote a more sustainable and ethical trading environment.

Works Cited
“Africa Intelligence: Exclusive News on Africa.” Africa Intelligence, www.africaintelligence.com/central-africa/2021/11/05/usaid-to-inspect-uae-impact-on-responsible-gold-trade. Accessed 21 Nov. 2023.
Hunter, Shawn Blore, Marcena, and Shawn Blore Hunter Marcena. “Dubai’s Problematic Gold Trade – Dubai’s Role in Facilitating Corruption and Global Illicit Financial Flows.” Carnegie Endowment for International Peace, carnegieendowment.org/2020/07/07/dubai-s-problematic-gold-trade-pub-82184.
The EU Conflict Minerals Regulation High Stakes, Disappointing Results Paper on the Effectiveness of European Union Regulation 2017/821 International Peace Information Service. www.responsiblemines.org/wp-content/uploads/2023/10/The-EU-conflict-minerals-regulation_High-stakes-disappointing-results.pdf. Accessed 21 Nov. 2023.

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WilliamstonDelegates 11/21/2023 15:28:15 136.228.39.189

Topic: 2023-Impact of Conflict Minerals
Country: Belgium
Delegate Name: Ava Cousineau

Delegate: Ava Cousineau
School: Williamston High School
Country: The Kingdom of Belgium
Committee: SPECPOL
Topic: Impact of Conflict Minerals

Conflict minerals have been a main contributor to tensions in African countries for many years. These minerals, including gold, tin, tungsten, tantalum, and others, have persisted to remain as a way to fund violence and armed conflicts between nations including violations of human rights and humanitarian and international law. A main area of conflict for these crimes has taken place in the Democratic Republic of Congo. The large amount of minerals being located in the nation resulted in their profit being used to finance such crimes against the people. Disputes between armed groups have led to mass murders resulting in over 3 million deaths due to the conflict. Ongoing tensions have led world leaders to discuss possible ways to limit the possible acts of violence committed from the funding from the minerals.

Due to the issues with these conflict minerals and what the profit form the sale of the minerals, legislators have worked on making new bills and policies that will assist in lowering the use for acts of violence. In 2010, the Security and Exchange Commission passed a reform bill that required companies that were purchasing these minerals from the DRC to disclose whether or not their purchases helped fund conflicts within the nation. This bill allowed the flow of income from the conflict minerals to remain to not hurt the economic side of the issue, while still aiding in the decrease in violence. Following the example, the European Union created its own regulations including the requirement of companies to disclose their involvement with conflict minerals in 2015. Belgium has been cooperative with the regulations set in place since adopted in 2017. The nation has continued to remain compliant with the regulations and continue to use these minerals in a sustainable manner.

Since 2017, Belgium has been donating an annual fund toward the Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative. This program promotes the public and clear management of natural resources such as minerals, oils, and gasses. The EITI supports the local populations of these nations that are major sources of the natural resources. Belgium greatly supports the implementation of this program into the DRC to directly assist the communities within the conflict mineral rich nation due to the full transparency of the activities of the companies engaging in the sale of the minerals. The EITI, established by the British Prime Minister Blair, has been a helpful step in the process of decreasing the harmful impact of conflict minerals.

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Kaycee Duffey 11/21/2023 14:32:33 67.39.250.5

Topic: 2023-Impact of Conflict Minerals
Country: Gabon
Delegate Name: Samantha Kantor

Special Political Committee
Conflict of Minerals
Gabon
Samantha Kantor, Forest Hills Northern High School

Gabon was colonized by France in the late 19th century and became an independent country in 1960. France developed Gabon’s economy to depend on trade, particularly trade with France. Gabon exported raw materials and imported manufactured goods. Thus, Gabon became dependent on France to purchase its natural resources and failed to develop an internal manufacturing industry. France profited greatly from the sales of Gabonese oil and timber. France is still currently exploiting Gabon for its oil. There are many French oil bases found in Gabon today, such as: TotalEnergies, Maurel and Prom, and Perenco, all of which are making significant profits. The young African generations are getting fed up with the French meddling in their affairs and exploiting their natural resources while keeping them “the poorest people on earth”.
Evidently even in the modern age many companies have continued exploiting the numerous resources of African nations through purchasing goods at lower than market prices, supporting the use of forced labor, and obtaining product from unethical sources; this in turn has continued insurgency, terrorism, and warmongering in underprivileged nations. One such example is the blood diamonds in Sierra Leone. Blood diamonds, also known as conflict diamonds, are diamonds that are mined in war zones and sold to finance violence. Sierra Leone was one of the countries that suffered from the blood diamond trade, which fueled a civil war that lasted over a decade. The diamond mines were controlled by British companies and other foreign merchants, who exploited the newfound market and contributed to the conflict.
Gabon is interested in finding a solution to the complex issue while maintaining national sovereignty. Developing nations that are being exploited deserve a fair share of the profit they generate. According to a report by Global Financial Integrity and the Centre for Applied Research at the Norwegian School of Economics, developing countries send trillions of dollars more to the west than the other way around1. This is a result of trade misinvoicing, tax havens, and illicit financial flows. To address this issue, developed countries should take measures to ensure that developing countries receive a fair share of the profits generated by their resources and labor.
France and all other nations need to take responsibility and ensure that the exploitation of developing nations is addressed and that the profits generated by these nations are shared equitably. The UN can play a key role in promoting transparency and accountability in international trade and finance, and in ensuring that the rights of developing nations are protected.

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Trevor Riley 11/21/2023 13:25:43 64.49.126.130

Topic: 2023-Impact of Conflict Minerals
Country: Mozambique
Delegate Name: Faith Pawloski

While everyone can agree that conflict minerals are unethical to use, they still find their way into everyday products. Defined as a mineral such as gold, columbite-tantalite (coltan), cassiterite, tungsten, and wolframite mined by armored forces, conflict minerals have an expansive negative impact on human rights. In the past, the UN has issued the Guiding Principles for Business and Human Rights in 2011 to insure that basic human rights and the avoidance of abuses are met; specifically, protection, respect and remedy when wrongs are committed. In 2022, 53 percent of companies were not able to determine if their products did indeed use conflict minerals.

Though some of Mozambique’s allies use conflict minerals, Mozambique doesn’t not support the use of conflict minerals. While the conflict in Cabo-Delgado over gas and oil is not classified as a fight over conflict minerals, the general situation is the same. The dispute over the valuable land has torn apart Mozambique and more than 1 million people have been displaced. There have also been abductions of woman and children, beheadings, and buildings burned to the ground.

Mozambique proposes that regulations should be stricter, especially those that track shipping records. With the current policies and regulations, it is too easy for conflict minerals to enter the main flow of all minerals; we must prevent this at all costs because by using the conflict minerals that entered the supply of all other minerals, it supports the activities of the armed and terrorist groups that mine them. Another measure that should be taken to eliminate conflict minerals altogether is to encourage large companies to promote how damaging they are. A similar problem to this was recycling. Before large firms were advertising how important recycling is, the problem was not well known by the public, so therefore unaddressed. If large companies like Apple and Tesla spoke out against using conflict minerals, progress could be made on the issue. In order to resolve the humanitarian crisis in Mozambique, large and influential companies across the world must take a stand and speak out against the use of conflict minerals.

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WilliamstonDelegates 11/21/2023 08:05:05 136.228.39.189

Topic: 2023-Impact of Conflict Minerals
Country: China
Delegate Name: Lee Gerring

Delegate: Lee Gerring
Committee: SPECPOL
Topic: Impact of Conflict Minerals
Country: People’s Republic of China
School: Williamston High School

Conflict minerals are a very pressing issue when it comes to human rights and tensions within countries. Conflict minerals are specifically minerals that are extracted or extorted by armed groups, usually with the use of forced labor. The minerals mainly acquired like this include gold, columbite-tantalite, tungsten, and wolframite, and the vast majority of these being sourced from the Democratic Republic of the Congo. These minerals are used worldwide to power devices like phones and computers making the system to obtain these minerals more demanding as the want for these technologies increases. Not only is the extraction of these minerals a major human rights violation on the people forced to extract them, but it is also causing major environmental damage, such as erosion, and causing major conflict with locals over ownership and control of the mining deposits being used. Previously, the UN had taken its ability to unanimously endorse the Guiding Principles for Business and Human Rights in 2011. This obligated states to protect against human rights abuses within their territory, this would include the abuse of the people being forced into extracting these minerals.
China is no stranger to the issue of conflict minerals. As a part of China’s old Belt and Road Initiative, the country has major investments in mining infrastructure all over the world, especially in major places such as the Democratic Republic of the Congo, which is already a major player in the mining of conflict minerals. For the economic prosperity of China, it was not up to their control how these minerals are extracted when being taken in foreign countries. However, after the Organisation for Economic Co-Operation and Development’s 2017 Responsible Mineral Supply Chains Forum, the topic of protecting citizens against being forced into extracting these minerals, China has put in place certain precautions. China’s standard on conflict minerals has recently changed with its efforts to align it with the Organisation for Economic Co-Operation and Development’s (OECD) Due Diligence Guidance for Responsible Supply Chains of Minerals from Conflict-Affected and High-Risk Areas. China is now advancing its efforts to address conflict minerals by incorporating mineral guidance as a national standard, they also have created a new legally binding oversight and a supervising rule. The rule is expected to apply to ores and concentrates containing the ‘three T’s’: tin, tungsten and tantalum from the DRC and neighboring countries. The companies directly affected by the rule will be those importing, exporting, smelting and refining these three substances in China. Companies that are impacted by China’s regulations are much more upstream companies.
China already recognizes the extensive efforts previously made and currently still being made to help resolve the issue of conflict minerals. As of now, China is trying their best to work along with the OECD and following the rules and regulations put in place while still trying to keep the national sovereignty of each nation involved. China’s Due Diligence Guidance for Responsible Supply Chains of Minerals has laid out extensive efforts and objectives they have. As stated in the Guidance “by providing guidance to all Chinese companies which are extracting and/or are using mineral resources and their related products and are engaged at any point in the supply chain of minerals to identify, prevent and mitigate their risks of contributing to conflict.” While China hopes to keep foreign policy out of their government, they still plan to improve upon their efforts and looks to countries like Pakistan and Russia as an ally for improvements, and hopes to find major improvements to regulation to be made to all countries having an issue such as conflict minerals.

Sources:

“China Increases Focus on Conflict Minerals.” Assent, 27 Feb. 2022, www.assent.com/blog/china-increases-focus-on-conflict-minerals/.

Chinese Due Diligence Guidelines for Responsible Supply Chains and Mining – Global Witness, www.globalwitness.org/documents/18138/201512_Chinese_Due_Diligence_Guidelines_for_Responsible_Mineral_Supply_Chains_-_En_K83fxzt.pdf.

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WilliamstonDelegates 11/21/2023 07:45:07 136.228.39.189

Topic: 2023-Impact of Conflict Minerals
Country: Denmark
Delegate Name: Jackson Harlan

Country: Denmark
Delegate: Jackson Harlan
School: Williamston High School
Committee: SPECPOL
Topic: Impact of conflict minerals

The definition of Conflict Minerals does not even begin to describe the terrible troubles they bring to the world. They are described as minerals being mined with the benefit of armed groups in politically unstable countries. These minerals are usually defined as tantalum, tin, tungsten, and gold. They fund some of the most despicable human rights violations such as slave labor, and human trafficking. Today conflict minerals are most commonly found in northern Africa, but can also be found in other places, such as northern South Africa, parts of Asia and Europe, and Mexico. Specifically in Europe, Ukraine has minerals that may have a weigh in on the Russia-Ukraine conflict. In other parts of the world such as Afghanistan and the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), two countries struggling with a severe conflict mineral problem, these minerals are used to fund conflict in the area. There are also the environmental aspects of mining conflict minerals, which include methods that often cause pollution, and erosion.
The UN (United Nations) and other global organizations have passed and proposed large amounts of legislation surrounding conflict minerals. They tend to focus on trying to find a place in the supply chain where conflict minerals can be cut-off without creating a global economic crisis. Specifically the EU (European Union) has proposed many ideas such as one that came into effect in 2021 where importers must prove their imports of the specified minerals must pass the EU’s resourcing standards. Despite coming into effect four years after its passing, as to give importers time to adjust, no notable change has been made in the supply change, and conflict minerals continue to be just as big of a problem as ever. The world relies on these conflict minerals, which are used to produce popular smart devices. In 2002 the security council met to discuss the rising issues of conflict minerals at the time and came to the conclusion they could not put a full embargo on these minerals. The due diligence program, created by the UN, is the most successful. It has put arms embargoes on the DRC and has implicated travel bans in the areas of conflict. Denmark has also worked to create the EUs plan and is in full support of its implementation.
Denmark has addressed the chair of the security council surrounding conflict minerals in the Democratic Republic of Congo reporting its involvement in the EU and the plans they are making for the future. Denmark is aware of the lack of knowledge surrounding conflict minerals, to solve the problem in the supply chain and work to end the conflicts, people must first be aware of the problem. In fact 80% of businesses were not able to determine where their raw minerals were from. The first step in solving this crisis is education, this begins in the downstream half of production with the market makers. Requiring manufactures of minerals state where their minerals are sourced from in a clear and present way. Secondly the UN needs to take control of these mines, the armed groups will continue to profit off of the minerals being mined and that money will be used to fuel the conflict if there is no intervention. In doing so the mines can still produce and the supply chain can continue almost as normal, while taking away the funding from these armed groups. This needs to be simultaneous with attempting to stabilize the infrastructure of the region’s government or else the conflict will continue. This is especially true in places such as DRC, where much of the economic flow is created by these minerals. Denmark recognizes that these changes may result in economic hardship and an economic support system must be put in place. Not just for the country’s government, but also for the miners themselves. It is clear many steps need to be taken to insure the solidity of the regulations already in place while also taking additional steps to support individuals countries’ needs.

“80% of Companies Don’t Know If Their Products Contain Conflict Minerals.” Harvard Business Review, 17 Feb. 2017, hbr.org/2017/01/80-of-companies-dont-know-if-their-products-contain-conflict-minerals.
“Conflict Minerals Regulation.” Trade, policy.trade.ec.europa.eu/development-and-sustainability/conflict-minerals-regulation_en#:~:text=In%20politically%20unstable%20areas%2C%20armed,mobile%20phones%2C%20cars%20and%20jewellery. Accessed 15 Nov. 2023.
OECD Due Diligence Guidance for Responsible Supply Chains of Minerals …, www.oecd.org/daf/inv/mne/mining.htm. Accessed 15 Nov. 2023.
“What Are Conflict Minerals?” Responsible Minerals Initiative, www.responsiblemineralsinitiative.org/about/faq/general-questions/what-are-conflict-minerals/. Accessed 15 Nov. 2023.

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Celia Kaechele 11/20/2023 13:44:56 173.167.18.97

Topic: 2023-Impact of Conflict Minerals
Country: Jordan
Delegate Name: Meira Gable

The mining of conflict minerals in the Great Lakes region of Africa, has ramifications on the entire international community. The use of forced labor and exploitation in the mining of these resources creates a situation that violates UN regulations and constitutes not only human rights violations, but also war crimes. Armed groups aren’t being held accountable for their offenses, which also includes inhumane treatment of women and children. Additionally, 3TG minerals (tungsten, gold, tin, and tantalum) serve a large role in the global tech industry, being incorporated into everyday items such as cell phones, and creating a dependency on conflict minerals in wealthy and technologically advanced countries. Due diligence by these companies is key. In the production of conflict minerals, armed militias in countries with unstable and weak central governments exert force over the population and gain control of natural resources, in this case mineral deposits. The root of these groups’ successes is the inability of governmental systems to contain the power held by armed militias over land, resources, and civilians. In tandem with this is the economic prosperity yielded to the perpetrators of this conflict through not only the purchasing of these materials but also the implementation of a taxation system for access to the mines by artisanal miners. Essentially this creates a situation where companies using conflict minerals are directly funding armed groups, giving them the means to buy weapons and advance their causes. The UN has already made some attempts at trying to solve this crisis with limited success.

The Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan acknowledges the difficulty in addressing conflict minerals in Africa. As a leader in the Middle Eastern tech industry, the importance of maintaining the autonomy of technology production is important. However, establishing regulations on the appropriate sourcing of mineral imports is just as crucial. The Jordanian government has ratified many of the International Conventions on child labor including the UN CRC Optional Protocol on Armed Conflict and the Palermo Protocol on Trafficking in Persons. This in addition to the adoption of other policies has limited the proliferation of child labor in our own country.

First and foremost, establishing firmer regulations on companies in the use of conflict minerals is essential to mitigating this crisis. Instituting reliable sourcing for technological materials is a step that all nations can take to reduce the success of armed groups in the Great Lakes region. A second goal of this committee must be reducing the power of armed militias, in order to limit the amount of conflict minerals being mined in the first place. The Jordanian delegation would not be opposed to UN intervention in this regard.

The delegation of Jordan is open to many of the pathways forward in combating this crisis, and is looking forward to working with the delegates of this committee to find a solution for the conflict minerals in the Great Lakes region.

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Celia Kaechele 11/20/2023 13:27:46 173.167.18.97

Topic: 2023-Impact of Conflict Minerals
Country: Rwanda
Delegate Name: Josh Machnacki

The term “conflict minerals” refers to minerals – namely tantalum, tin, tungsten, and gold – that are sourced from regions experiencing armed conflict and human rights abuses, most notably in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC). In 2011, United Nations member states endorsed Guiding Principles for Business and Human Rights. These principles obligate businesses to conduct due diligence in their supply chains, particularly in conflict zones, to identify and mitigate potential human rights abuses related to mineral extraction and trade. The framework emphasizes the importance of corporate responsibility to respect human rights. Collaboration between governments is also encouraged to ensure responsible sourcing practices and to establish National Action Plans that regulate and monitor mineral trade, contributing to the prevention of human rights violations associated with conflict minerals.

Rwanda recognizes the challenges the DRC faces and has implemented measures responding to conflict minerals in the past. Rwanda banned the sale of minerals from areas where there is fighting in the Democratic Republic of Congo in 2011 to put an end to mineral smuggling from the DRC within its borders.

The situation regarding peace and security in the DRC, especially in its eastern provinces, has shown little improvement since 2014 due to the continual violence perpetrated by armed groups. Conflicts in eastern DRC remained relatively stable from 2014 to 2016 but witnessed a steady escalation from 2017 to 2021, resulting in an increase in both battles and fatalities. This is caused by many factors, including weak governance, corruption, and the exploitation of natural resources. The dynamics of these conflicts have been further complicated by shifting alliances among armed groups and external events such as delayed elections have roused tensions. Despite the 2011 efforts, the region continues to grapple with interdependent factors that contribute to an enduring climate of insecurity and ongoing violence.

It is clear that further action is required on the part of the UN to combat conflict minerals and violence in the DRC. The delegation from Rwanda recommends humanitarian assistance and peacekeeping efforts be directed to these issues. Rwanda urges the government of the DRC to take a stronger and more unified action against armed groups that are causing violence. Rwanda acknowledges the significance of collaborative efforts to address the root causes of conflicts in the DRC and emphasizes diplomatic engagement, regional cooperation, and adherence to international frameworks. Rwanda is committed to working closely with the DRC and other neighboring countries to mitigate the influence of armed groups, promote good governance, and address the complex interplay of factors contributing to insecurity in the region. The United Nations should strive to find a strategy to bring about lasting peace and security in the eastern DRC. Rwanda believes in the potential for constructive regional partnerships to address the challenges at hand and is committed to stability and cooperation for the good of the many.

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