Barcelona against illegal coltan trading

14 November 2016

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Civil rights , Economy , International

Last night we travelled to the Congo for an hour with Salvados. Thank you once again, Jordi Évole and your team, for that bold and much-needed programme that enters our dining rooms and conscience every Sunday evening, showing how TV can be a tool for criticism and change. But being witness to horrors we are partly responsible for must not make us feel powerless or guilty to the point of paralysis.All of us, wherever we are, can act. On an individual level, by consuming more responsibly. As a public authority, by introducing clauses into the City Council's telephony contracts that include fair-trade phones, with certificates that ensure their components are traceable and free of any suspicion of exploiting children. We have been doing that in Barcelona.

A few months ago we met a Congolese activist at City Hall called Caddy Adzuba. She has been fighting against the illegal coltan trade for years, the latest cause of so much extreme violence, including the terrible, large-scale and systematic rape of women in that country. It was a fruitful meeting that produced a commitment: Barcelona will use its international influence, as a benchmark for rights and technological innovation, to highlight its struggle.

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This blog features ideas, thoughts and reflections on my daily life as the Mayor of Barcelona.

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