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state department

state department

Congresswoman Karen Bass asks State Department About US Companies in the Congo

1y ago
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At the February 2, 2012 Hearing on "U.S. Policy Toward Post-Election Democratic Republic of Congo" hosted by the Committee on Foreign Affairs: Subcommittee on Africa, Global Health, and Human Rights, Congresswoman Karen Bass asked State Department officials which American companies are operating in the Congo. One of the officials eluded to Freeport McMoran, yet he was unclear if it is a US company. The current Vice-President of Freeport-McMoran is Melissa Sanderson. She was the political officer and charge d'affaires at the U.S. Embassy at the time of the deal signing with the Congolese government and was accused for using her position to pressure Congolese president into signing the contract and received the position at Freeport as an added bonus. "The Tenke Fungurume Mining (TFM) company controls a 1,600 sq km (617.8 sq mi) mining concession in the Democratic Republic of Congo. The company has three shareholders: Freeport McMoRan Copper & Gold Inc., which operates the mine and holds 56 percent of the shares, and is the world's largest publicly-traded copper company; Lundin Mining (24 percent); and, the state-owned Gécamines (20 percent)." Source: "FREEPORT MCMORAN VERSUS THE PEOPLE OF FUNGURUME: How the largest mining investment in DRC has brought poverty not prosperity." http://www.osisa.org/sites/default/files/openpolicy03fungurume_0.pdf 617.8 sq miles is equivalent to almost 299 thousands football fields. It is the size of New York City (with all the boroughs) plus 2 Washington DC size. It is bigger than Los Angeles plus 1 Washington DC. This mine, owned by Freeport and Lundin, is the single largest investment in the Congo. The mine is also listed in the top 20 sites the US must protect against terrorist attacks.