This is a profile of the Central African region, published in the 2002-2003 yearbook of the Norwegian Council for Africa (in Norwegian). The article focuses on the war in the Democratic Republic of Congo and its repercussions for the neighbouring countries, and discusses what roles valuable natural resources played in the war. It also argues that the International Criminal Court, whose statute came into force on 1 July 2002, has a potential for strengthening accountability in the region and for deterring war crimes from being committed in the future.