KONY 2012 controversy

KONY 2012 controversy, Young Australians are at the helm of the Kony 2012 movement with high school students rallying support for the viral campaign by humanitarian group Invisible Children.

Rijana Gray and Louise Armitage made a YouTube video to get their friends on board with the campaign, which aims to bring down the African terrorist group, the Lord’s Resistance Army (LRA) and their leader Joseph Kony by spreading awareness and inspiring global action.

"Basically guys, we know that you’ve seen the 30 minute video that’s been displayed all over Facebook, pretty much all around the world," Rijana says in the video.

"We don’t want it to be some things that we go on about for two weeks and then two months later we forget about it and then one year later, we remember it again.

"This is something that needs attention."

The pair go on to list facts about Kony and the atrocities he has committed before urging people to join the protest in Melbourne on April 20.

An outpouring of social media support was gaining momentum on Facebook and Twitter last night, sparked by a documentary made by US humanitarian group Invisible Children to "make Joseph Kony famous" for enslaving and killing Ugandan children.

The documentary, showing the plight of Uganda through the eyes of a former LRA child soldier, Jacob, and the director Jason Russell has been viewed nearly eight million times in two days and has seen at least 50,000 Australians sign up for its day of action on April 20.

Ugandan-born Gladys-Amal Odur is in year 12 in Australia and told ninemsn she had heard about Kony’s crimes and the Lord's Resistance Army in Uganda from her family.

She also made a YouTube video praising the makers for bringing attention the such an important issue.

"I think Generation Y has the greatest advantage to get issues moving due to the rapid speed of technology. We are able to work together, all over the world to fight inequality and injustice through our laptops and iPhones," Gladys-Amal said.

"I hope we actually get somewhere with this because I've seen too much injustice in through television and my parents telling me about it in Africa."

Kony’s force echoes the violence inflicted by a host of African dictators, including 'the Butcher of Uganda', former president Idi Amin, who died in exile. "Idi Amin was lucky to escape without going to trial for his crimes against humanity after he massacred half a million Ugandans because of their ethnic groups," Gladys-Amal told ninemsn.

If found, Kony faces indictment by the International Criminal Court for war crimes including kidnapping over 30,000 African youths to recruit as child soldiers and sex slaves.

"I will feel so happy seeing him in trial at the International Criminal Court because I will feel like I helped, I will feel like I helped get justice for the children my age and younger who were enslaved to be child soldiers instead of getting an education," Gladys-Amal said.

She told ninemsn the support rallied by the Kony 2012 campaign had raised more awareness in 24 hours than decades of work by humanitarian agencies.

"This time Joseph Kony must be caught."

Overnight ninemsn was flooded with emails about "cover the night" events being created on Facebook, many from high school students, with some group citing nearly 40,000 followers.

The half-hour film has been so successful its makers have obliterated their target of 500,000 Facebook shares, already registering over 750,000. The growing interest has also caused their website to crash under the huge demand.

On April 20, supporters plan to "paint their town red" with Kony 2012 posters.

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