It is also clear that FADRC has been involved in the exploita- tion directly by taking control of mines, or aiding in supplying arms to several militias (UNSC, 2008). Many of the arms in re- cent years being smuggled into the DRC originate from China. However, there are also arms originating from eastern Europe, and many other countries. A number of aircrafts and trucks are routinely flown into the DRC or transported through Uganda or Rwanda to support the militias.
Up to now, most of the efforts to control environmental crime have been done by rangers in areas inside or near protected ar- eas. As rangers were forbidden to conduct road blocks and even had to remove VCP’s following some of the attempted peace agreements brokered with the militias, these militia groups could return to or even expand their exploitation of resources unhindered, and thus continue financing their warfare, with devastating results for the wildlife. A very similar effect was observed in Bardia National Park in Nepal, where the Nepal- ese army was not allowed to patrol the park as part of a peace- agreement with the Maoists, and many rhinos were lost. The park overall lost over 90% of their rhinos across a decade (Nel- lemann, pers. Obs., REF).
Without halting the resource exploitation, stopping smuggling across the borders and thus restraining the financing of the militias, the conflict and subsequent loss of human life and the loss of wildlife including gorillas will not stop. Negotiating peace seems to have had little effect as long as there is ample opportunity of profit for the militias, and the militias erupt and are largely created with this purpose in mind, including sup- port from corrupt officials in neighboring countries.