Resolve joins the call to increase efforts to detect LRA
This week, Resolve called on Congress to provide increased funds for U.S.-led programs that help pinpoint the locations of LRA fighters attacking civilians in central Africa. In a letter circulated to members of the Senate’s defense appropriations subcommittee, Resolve and partner groups acknowledged the importance of such efforts:
“Disparate groups of LRA fighters are currently operating in remote and largely inaccessible areas of Central African Republic, Democratic Republic of Congo, and South Sudan. Their attacks against civilians have spanned a geographic area the size of California. Regional governments lack the capabilities needed to locate and track LRA groups in such difficult terrain. Timely information about the locations and movements of LRA groups can help prevent LRA attacks on civilians, enable early warning for civilians at greatest risk, and increase the prospects for bringing Kony and other top LRA commanders to justice.”
The U.S. is helping gather information on the locations of LRA leaders and groups by flying airplanes outfitted with advanced surveillance technology over areas of suspected LRA activity. This information can be shared with governments and local community leaders to prevent LRA attacks. However, because the terrain where the LRA operates is so vast, current efforts have not been adequate.
Last week, we reported that a Senate committee had authorized $50 million to expand existing surveillance efforts. However, for those funds to be used, they have to now be included in budget legislation overseen by the defense appropriations subcommittee in Congress.
We’re going to be doing all we can to help secure that $50 million in next year’s budget – but we’re going to need help. If one of your senators is on the defense appropriations subcommittee, you may be hearing from us! (Of course, you have our permission to call your senator’s office in the meantime.)
Photo credit: Finbarr O’Reilly