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US appeals court hears oral arguments in lawsuit by business orgs. against conflict minerals rule

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Author: Julien Jay, Clubic.com

Lors de son keynote de pré-ouverture du CES, Brian Kzranich, nouveau CEO d'Intel, a annoncé que les processeurs Intel commercialisés en 2014 seront tous conflict-free...Pour faire un processeur, il faut...[des] métaux qui proviennent...[de] la République Démocratique du Congo. Une région du monde...où les mines sont parfois détenues par des groupes rebelles. Leur acheter des minerais reviendrait à alimenter le conflit et le massacre d'êtres humains...Brian Kzranich a donc annoncé qu'après quatre années de travail...Intel était dorénavant en mesure de garantir qu'aucun de ses processeurs n'utilisent des minerais en provenance des mines pouvant alimenter ou financer des conflits en Afrique. Mais attention, il n'est pas non plus question pour Intel de déserter la République Démocratique du Congo...

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Author: Carey L. Biron, IPS-Inter Press Service

Grandes asociaciones de la industria y el comercio de Estados Unidos apelaron contra una norma que obligará a las grandes empresas a excluir de sus cadenas de suministro mundiales el oro, estaño y otros minerales utilizados para financiar conflictos armados en los Grandes Lagos de África central...[Los apelantes] sostienen que el artículo 1502 de la nueva ley impone una carga financiera excesiva a las empresas y atenta contra las garantías constitucionales de libertad de expresión…Los partidarios del artículo 1502 argumentan que muchas empresas exhiben un interés creciente en hacer lo necesario para cumplir con la disposición, por razones tanto de marca como financieras…Intel, fabricante de equipos informáticos, anunció…el primer producto libre de esos materiales en el mundo, y declaró que sus microprocesadores ya no utilizarían "minerales de conflicto"

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7 January 2014

Appeals Court Hears Conflict Minerals Arguments (USA)

Author: Ben Dipietro, Wall Street Journal

A federal appeals court heard oral arguments...from supporters and opponents of a rule requiring companies this year to report on to what extent their products use “conflict minerals” from the Democratic Republic of the Congo...“We understand the seriousness of the humanitarian situation in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) and abhor the violence in that country. We believe, however, that the SEC’s corporate disclosure rule is not an effective approach to solving this serious humanitarian challenge,” the three business groups said...“Global Witness said the appeal is a “shameful attempt” by the business groups to gut the law...Despite the appeal, many companies have worked to check their aupply networks and meet the May 31 reporting deadline, Global Witness said.

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7 January 2014

Intel says its processors are now ‘conflict-free’ (USA)

Author: Julie Jacobson, Associated Press

Intel...says its processors are now free of minerals from mines held by armed groups in the Democratic Republic of the Congo. [This decision] is the fruit of four years of work by the company to determine the sources of four crucial metals widely used in electronics manufacturing: tantalum, tungsten, tin and gold.

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6 January 2014

USA: Reject legal threat to lifesaving Conflict Minerals Rule

Author: Amnesty International USA

US corporate interests must not be allowed to invalidate the Conflict Minerals Rule, which requires companies to investigate and disclose whether their products contain certain minerals that help fund armed groups in mineral-rich countries in Africa, said Amnesty International...The US Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit will hear a challenge by three industry groups against the rule...Amnesty International joined the lawsuit to support the rule. “This legal challenge to the Conflict Minerals Rule is nothing but a crass effort by industry groups to put profits ahead of principles,” said...Amnesty International USA. “The rule was required by Congress to save lives and stop human rights abuses by curbing the flow of funding to armed groups operating with impunity in the areas these minerals are mined...”As well as a longstanding armed conflict in eastern DRC...fresh armed conflicts have recently broken out in its mineral rich neighbours Central African Republic and South Sudan.

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3 January 2014

Business Lobby Goes to [US] Court to Stop ‘Conflict Minerals’ Rule

Author: Jamila Trindle, Foreign Policy (USA)

A years-long effort to make U.S. companies disclose the use of minerals from war-torn African countries could finally go into effect this year...unless business groups...can get a court to toss it out...[National Association of Manufacturers, US Chamber of Commerce, Business Roundtable] are set to argue in the U.S. Court of Appeals...that the provision is too expensive and hard to implement... Advocates for the requirement argue that trade in gold, tin and other minerals from the Democratic Republic of the Congo supports armed groups that terrorize, rape, and kill civilians. The provision was written into the 2010 Dodd-Frank law...Amnesty International...argues that increased transparency will help stop the flow of money to armed groups in DRC...These "efforts are intended to invalidate the requirement that companies investigate and disclose information that many people think companies should already know: whether their products contain conflict minerals that finance armed groups responsible for appalling human rights abuses..." Amnesty argued in its brief to the court [refers to Dollar General, Lowe's, Cabela's]

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