The Second Congo War (also known as the Great War of Africa or the Great African War) began in August 1998, little more than a year after the First Congo War and involving some of the same issues, in the Democratic Republic of the Congo and officially ended in July 2003 when the Transitional Government of the Democratic Republic of the Congo took power. However, hostilities have continued since then in the ongoing Lord's Resistance Army insurgency, and the Kivu and Ituri conflicts.
The deadliest war in modern African history, it has directly involved nine African countries, as well as about 20 armed groups. By 2008, the war and its aftermath had killed 5.4 million people, mostly from disease and starvation, making the Second Congo War the deadliest conflict worldwide since World War II. Millions more were displaced from their homes or sought asylum in neighbouring countries.
Despite a formal end to the war in July 2003 and an agreement by the former belligerents to create a government of national unity, 1,000 people died daily in 2004 from easily preventable cases of malnutrition and disease. The war and the conflicts afterwards, including the Kivu and Ituri conflicts, were driven by, among other things, the trade in conflict minerals.