FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: Tuesday, June 19, 2012
CONTACT: Ian Koski at 202-224-4216
Senate Foreign Relations Committee advances resolution condemning Joseph Kony, LRA
Senator Coons’ bipartisan resolution cosponsored by 45 senators; now awaits consideration by full Senate
WASHINGTON – U.S. Senator Chris Coons (D-Del.), chair of the Senate Foreign Relations Subcommittee on African Affairs, today applauded progress on S.Res.402, a resolution he introduced in March condemning the crimes against humanity committed by Joseph Kony and the Lord’s Resistance Army (LRA), supporting ongoing international efforts to remove Kony from the battlefield, and calling for the U.S. to continue to enhance its mobility, intelligence and logistical support of regional forces protecting civilians and pursuing the LRA.
“For two decades, Joseph Kony and the Lord’s Resistance Army have been terrorizing Uganda and its neighbors in central Africa - tearing families apart and demolishing whole villages,” Senator Coons said. “Joseph Kony represents the worst of mankind, and he and his commanders must be held accountable for their war crimes. Nearly half of my colleagues in the Senate have joined me in standing with the President and the international community to work towards bringing Joseph Kony and his top commanders to justice. I applaud the Committee’s work today in passing the resolution, and hope that this bill will see swift action on the floor.”
Hundreds of Americans have signed on to S.Res.402 as “citizen cosponsors” to show their support for stopping Joseph Kony.
“Prior to introducing the resolution, I heard from many Delawareans, including my own children, who wanted to know what I was doing to stop Joseph Kony,” Senator Coons said. “This resolution shows that members of Congress are listening. I am pleased that hundreds of Americans have joined as ‘citizen cosponsors,’ and their names will be immortalized in the Congressional record.”
In addition to condemning Kony and the LRA for crimes against humanity, the resolution, which was led by Senator Coons and Senator Jim Inhofe (R-Okla.), is cosponsored by 44 additional senators. It does the following:
- Supports the efforts of Uganda, the Democratic Republic of Congo, the Republic of South Sudan, the Central African Republic, and other regional governments, as well as the African Union and United Nations, to end the threat posed by the LRA;
- Supports continued efforts by the United States to strengthen the capabilities of regional military forces deployed to protect civilians and pursue commanders of the LRA; as well as to enhance cooperation and cross-border efforts to increase civilian protection and provide assistance to populations affected by the LRA;
- Calls on the U.S. to utilize existing funds for ongoing programs to enhance mobility, intelligence, and logistical capabilities for partner forces engaged in efforts to protect civilians or remove Joseph Kony and his top commanders from the battlefield;
- Calls on the President to keep Congress fully informed of U.S. efforts and to work closely with Congress to identify and address critical gaps in efforts to counter the LRA.