AIII #24: The ‘Gomenyi’ borderland: “It’s not always all about war”

The ‘Gomenyi’ borderland: “It’s not always all about war”

(picture provided by the author)

Stéphanie Perazzone

As noted in a wealth of political science literature and journalistic accounts dealing with eastern Congo, the province of North-Kivu as a whole and its chef-lieu Goma, are sadly known as the scene of continued socio-political violence, which is often framed in ethnic and economic terms. Described as a “beggar with diamonds in his pockets”[1], the DRC is routinely depicted as a paradigmatic case of state failure, despite being one of the world’s largest reservoirs of natural resources. ‘State failure’ is a western political notion defined as a country’s partial or total lack of organized control over its population and territory, thereby bearing the grim consequences of extreme poverty, war, misery and organized crime. With dozens of active armed groups in the region, and a highly contested political arena, North-Kivu thus perfectly…

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