WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today, U.S. Sen. Jim Inhofe (R-Okla.), a member of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee and a senior member of the Senate Armed Services Committee, commended the Senate Foreign Relations Committee for passing S.1067, the Lord’s Resistance Army Disarmament and Northern Uganda Recovery Act, which will develop a viable path to apprehend Joseph Kony and to disarm the Lord’s Resistance Army (LRA) and provide humanitarian assistance to those in the region that have been victims of the devastation inflicted by the LRA.
“For more than 20 years, Joseph Kony has led the LRA in a violent crusade around Uganda and the Great Lakes Region of Africa kidnapping more than 30,000 children and forcing them to fight as child soldiers while displacing millions,” Inhofe said. “I have met with the President of Uganda and Presidents of the other countries who have had to witness the havoc created by Joseph Kony. I have seen first hand the toll his tyranny has taken on the children of these countries. Joseph Kony must be stopped. To that end, I believe this bipartisan bill will bring us much closer to disarming the LRA and to ending the devastation and destruction this region in Africa has endured for far too long.
The Lord’s Resistance Army Disarmament and Northern Uganda Recovery Act, S.1067, requires the United States to work with multilateral partners to develop a viable path to disarm the LRA, while ensuring the protection of civilians. The bill authorizes $10 million in additional funding for humanitarian assistance for those areas outside of Uganda that have been victimized by the LRA and $30 million over three years for transitional justice and reconciliation to help the Ugandan government address the grievances and regional divisions that the LRA has exploited for nearly two decades.
Inhofe’s support for this legislations is just one of his many efforts to raise the visibility of this issue and to end the crisis in Uganda. In April of this year, Senator Inhofe visited the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) and spoke with President Kabila expressing to him of what critical importance he believes the partnership formed between the DRC, Uganda, and Southern Sudan is to eradicating the LRA.
Also, in April, Inhofe, alongside Pete Wentz of Fall Out Boy and actor Val Kilmer, participated in an event put on by the group Invisible Children in order to raise awareness surrounding the plight of the LRA’s child soldiers.
In February of 2006, Senator Inhofe sponsored a bi-partisan resolution (S.Res.366) affirming the importance of increased international attention and action to what’s happening with the LRA and affirming a national week of prayer for the Ugandan victims.
Senator Inhofe has had 108 visits to countries in the continent of Africa, more than any other Senator in the history of the U.S. Senate.