JANUARY 20, 2010: Majority of U.S. Senate Back Anti-LRA Bill

Majority of U.S. Senate Now Backs Feingold-Brownback Bill to Help Stop LRA
SOURCE: U.S. Senate

“There has not been this magnitude of bipartisan sponsorship on Africa legislation for over three decades.  The Lord’s Resistance Army has continued its reign of terror in Africa for nearly twenty five years, abducting tens of thousands of children for child soldiers or sex slaves, killing hundreds of thousands, and displacing millions.  The United States must work with the international community to bring Joseph Kony and his terrorist organization to justice and help provide protection and assistance to those who have suffered at the hands of the LRA,” Brownback said.

“The atrocities that have been committed by the LRA over more than two decades—particularly against children—defy comprehension. I am so pleased that the majority of my Senate colleagues have come together to take steps to help protect these innocent civilians and stop this violence once and for all,” Boxer said.

“I am pleased to join my Senate colleagues on this very important legislation,” Inhofe said.  “Having had over 100 country visits to the continent of Africa, I have seen first-hand how the Joseph Kony’s long-term violent crusade through the LRA has had a devastating impact on the children and people of Uganda and Africa’s Great Lakes Region.  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, and his brutality and tyranny must be stopped.  To that end, I believe this bipartisan bill will bring us much closer to disarming the LRA and to ending the destruction this region in Africa has endured for far too long.”

For more than two decades, under the leadership of Joseph Kony, the LRA has kidnapped more than 66,000 children and forced them to fight as child soldiers, wreaking havoc in northern Uganda and southern Sudan, and more recently, northeastern Congo and Central African Republic.  In addition to requiring a new strategy to confront the rebel group, the LRA Disarmament and Northern Uganda Recovery Act authorizes $10 million in additional funding for humanitarian assistance for those areas outside of Uganda now directly affected by the LRA’s brutality.   The legislation also authorizes $30 million over three years for transitional justice and reconciliation to encourage and help the Ugandan government to address the conditions in northern Uganda that enabled the LRA to emerge in the first place.

Senators cosponsoring the LRA Disarmament and Northern Uganda Recovery Act include:

Russ Feingold (D-WI)

Sam Brownback (R-KS)

Barbara Boxer (D-CA)

Jim Inhofe (R-OK)

Lamar Alexander (R-TN)

Mark Begich (D-AK)

Robert F. Bennett (R-UT)

Jeff Bingaman (D-NM)

Christopher Bond (R-MO)

Sherrod Brown (D-OH)

Roland Burris (D-IL)

Maria Cantwell (D-WA)

Benjamin L. Cardin (D-MD)

Robert P. Casey Jr. (D-PA)

Susan M. Collins (R-ME)

Bob Corker (R-TN)

Byron Dorgan (D-ND)

Richard Durbin (D-IL)

Al Franken (D-MN)

Kirsten E. Gillibrand (D-NY)

Kay Hagan (D-NC)

Tom Harkin (D-IA)

Daniel K. Inouye (D-HI)

Tim Johnson (D-SD)

Edward E. Kaufman (D-DE)

John F. Kerry (D-MA)

Amy Klobuchar (D-MN)

Mary L. Landrieu (D-LA)

Frank R. Lautenberg (D-NJ)

Patrick Leahy (D-VT)

Carl Levin (D-MI)

Joseph I. Lieberman (ID-CT)

Robert Menendez (D-NJ)

Jeff Merkley (D-OR)

Barbara A. Mikulski (D-MD)

Patty Murray (D-WA)

Mark L. Pryor (D-AR)

Jack Reed (D-RI)

Harry Reid (D-NV)

James E. Risch (R-ID)

Pat Roberts (R-KS)

Bernard Sanders (I-VT)

Charles E. Schumer (D-NY)

Jeanne Shaheen (D-NH)

Arlen Specter (D-PA)

Jon Tester (D-MT)

Mark Udall (D-CO)

Tom Udall (D-NM)

Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI)

Roger F. Wicker (R-MS)

Ron Wyden (D-OR)