September 16, 2019
 In 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.