Since the end of the Cold War, the illegal mining and sale of natural resources has emerged as a primary means of financing armed violence within conflict zones. In countries as diverse as Afghanistan, Angola, the Democratic Republic of the Congo, East Timor, and Liberia, this practice has not only funded some of the most brutal hostilities in recent history, it has created a perverse incentive for warfare. Far away from these hotspots, foreign companies profit from the illegal trade in “blood resources” and fuel conflicts—yet they are rarely held accountable.
“Corporate War Crimes: Prosecuting the Pillage of Natural Resources” provides a blueprint for prosecutors, advocates and others who wish to revive the prosecution of the war crime of pillage and hold accountable companies that illegally trade in conflict commodities. Written by CAP’s own Board Chair James Stewart, and published by the Open Society Foundation Justice Initiative, this report examines recent cases and the law governing pillage in detail.