DRCongo, Masisi territory, Rubaya, 2012 l Photo: Pauline Maisonneuve

Where the cellphones’ production line starts. Modern Times.

Rubaya, a village in the beautiful Masisi territory in the well-known North Kivu in DRCongo. This is one of the starting point for collecting coltan, the mineral which ends up in mobile phones, laptops, and other consumer products. 

For decades the trade in natural resources, including minerals, has played a central role in funding and fueling some of the world’s most brutal conflicts. Revenues from the extraction and trade of these natural resources can give abusive armed groups the means to operate and can provide off-budget funding to State security forces and corrupt officials. In many instances, these groups are responsible for grave human rights violations. In many instance, children work for collecting such natural resources, often under violence. In many instances, international companies source minerals from conflict-affected and high-risk areas around the world…