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NGO Opinions and Initiatives on Diamonds in Conflict


Initiatives and Statements | Reports


Initiatives and Statements

Diamond Industry, Government Still Not Preventing Import of Real 'Blood Diamonds' (December 7, 2006)

In this press release World Vision denounces the inadequate US government initiatives to regulate the diamond trade. Although the US accounts for two thirds of the rough diamonds trade, a recent government report revealed that the US lacks an effective monitoring system for imported diamonds. The organization favors consumer pressure on the diamond industry to force it to reliably certify diamonds free of conflict rather than a boycott.

Diamond Development Initiative Begins (August 15, 2005)

Recognizing the shortcomings of the Kimberley Process, the Diamond Development Initiative (DDI) creates an integrated framework to address underlying problems of diamond-financed wars in Africa. The DDI, a cross-sector initiative that includes representatives from NGOs, donor communities and the diamond industry, could help solve "political, social and economic challenges" of conflict diamonds in Sierra Leone, Angola, the Democratic Republic of Congo and other African nations.

Motherhood, Apple Pie and False Teeth: Corporate Social Responsibility in the Diamond Industry (June 5, 2003)

Ian Smillie highlights the inadequacy of the Kimberley Process' voluntary monitoring mechanism. Smillie insists that the diamond industry must embrace transparency in corporate procedure and end the practice of "multi-million dollar deals . . . made on a handshake." (Partnership Africa Canada)

Conflict Diamond Process Faces Credibility Test (April 25, 2003)

NGOs are calling on governments to strengthen their efforts in the lead up to the Kimberley Process. Lack of independent monitoring and concrete actions jeopardize the process that aims to curb the illicit diamond trade that fuels conflict and human rights abuses. (Amnesty International)

Does The UN Have A Coordinated Conflict Diamond Policy? (December 10, 2002)

The UN seems to target diamond sanctions in an arbitrary and uncoordinated manner, says Global Witness. The Security Council has lifted sanctions on Angolan diamonds, while it continues to enforce them on Sierra Leone, and has never imposed any on the DRC.

NGOs Call on the Diamond Industry to Clean Up Its Act (October 25, 2001)

An NGO coalition urges the diamond industry to "clean up its act" and to take concrete action by implementing a credible monitoring industry system of self-regulation with rigorous penalties. (Global Witness)

Fatal Transactions (November 23, 2001)

This press release by Global Witness underscores the hypocrisy of a global war against terrorism which leaves out proper diamond certification controls. The countries that are blocking an effective certification system, largely the diamond-consuming nations, are choosing to ignore the thousands of Africans who have lost their lives in the bloody terrorist pursuit of diamonds over the past decade.

Conflict Diamonds And the Global Fight (October 23, 2001)

The events and aftermath of September 11 illustrate the link between the capacity of terrorists to wreak havoc, and their ability to raise money through the illegal trafficking of valuable export commodities and illicit drugs. Perhaps one positive outgrowth of recent events is that Western governments will no longer put Africa's resource conflicts low on their list of priorities. (Concord Times)

US NGO's Initiate Valentine's Day Campaign (February 16, 2001)

A coalition of NGO's chose Valentine's Day to launch a campaign about conflict diamonds. The purpose of this operation is to increase public awareness and propose a law banning import of conflict diamonds in the US. (Rapaport)

"Conflict Diamonds" a Faí§ade (February 15, 2001)

The Namibian National Society for Human Rights gives us an other point of view on the so-called conflict diamond trade by accusing the Western countries of pursuing their own interest in order to control the diamond industry.

The Role of Liberia's Logging Industry on National And Regional Insecurity (January 24, 2001)

In this document addressed to the Security Council, Global Witness suggests the immediate imposition of a total embargo on Liberian timber, which, it says, plays an important role in Taylor's revenues, even more than the diamond trade. (IRIN)

Global Witness Urges UN to Pass Conflict Diamond Resolution (November 20, 2000)

The General Assembly should pass a resolution launching negotiations in the UN for an international conflict diamonds treaty, says Global Witness. Their press release also says that while the diamond industry has made proposals to stem the trade of conflict diamonds, these have not been implemented.

Global Witness: Missed Opportunities at London Conference (October 26, 2000)

Failure to mention the urgent need for the establishment of an international treaty within a specified timeframe for an international certification scheme of diamonds is a cause for concern with the ongoing conflicts in Africa says Global Witness. Also neglected was discussion of independent monitors for a certification scheme.

Civil Society Organization Reaction to World Diamond Congress (July 2000)

Amnesty International, Global Witness and other NGOs active in stopping the proliferation of "conflict diamonds" deem the decision in the World Diamond Congress as a good first step. Yet there is a long road ahead. ( )

NGO Open Letter to the World Diamond Congress in Antwerp Belgium, July 2000 (June 28, 2000)

Waiting for the establishment of universal system of banning "conflict diamonds" is too late. This letter asks the diamond industry to take immediate action to mark diamonds and provide forgery-proof certificates of origin and legitimacy. (Physicians for Human Rights)

Sierra Leone: Amnesty International Calls for Fast and Effective Action on Diamonds (June 30, 2000)

Amnesty International urged the UN Security Council to take decisive action against the humanitarian crisis in Sierra Leone. Amnesty is especially concerned with weapons imported from Liberia and diamonds mysteriously leaving Sierra Leone. (Amnesty International)

Oxfam: Sierra Leone Advocacy Aims (June 14, 2000)

Talking about Sierra Leone is not enough. Oxfam provides specific recommendations to urge the UN Security Council to tackle the roots of the conflict and protect the civilians in Sierra Leone. (Oxfam International)

Sierra Leone: Human Rights Watch Letter to UN Security Council (June 20, 2000)

This letter recommends the necessity for a stronger UN peacekeeping mandate, diamond embargo, and an UN-ordered inquiry to investigate the link between diamonds and weapons trade in Sierra Leone. See also Human Rights Watch's "Sierra Leone: Priorities of the International Community."(Human Rights Watch)

NGO Letter Calling for Security Council Action on the Diamond Trade and the Civil War in Sierra Leone (June 2, 2000)

A letter from Care International presents the position of several humanitarian NGOs and Global Policy Forum calling on the Security Council to strengthen the ban on trafficking arms and diamonds as a step towards ending the civil war in Sierra Leone. (Care International)

Sierra Leone: Cutting the Link Between Diamonds and Guns (May 31, 2000)

Amnesty International urged cooperation of governments, the Diamond High Council and other parties involved to take action in ceasing the trade of diamonds mined in the rebel controlled areas in Sierra Leone. Despite the UN Security Council's arms embargo, supplies of military equipments continue to reach the rebels.( Amnesty International)

Open Letter to the Security Council Concerning Sanctions against UNITA (April 14, 2000)

In response to the final report of the Angola sanctions expert panel, a group of NGOs calls on the Security Council to implement strong measures to reinforce sanctions on diamonds, arms, etc. in Angola.



Killing Kimberley? Conflict Diamonds and Paper Tigers (November 2006)

This Partnership Africa Canada report points to the failures of the Kimberley Process Certification Scheme for rough diamonds. Countries and industries' poor implementation of Kimberley regulations and a lack of control have led to massive fraud, as well as diamonds smuggling from various embargoed countries, such as in Ivory Coast. In each case, participants in the Kimberley Process have been unable or unwilling to decide on actions to abolish diamonds criminality. Partnership Africa, a pro-Kimberley Process organization, urges governments and industries for significant change of the Kimberley Process to effectively monitor conflict diamonds, including national internal controls and a penalty system.

Cautiously Optimistic: the Case for Maintaining Sanctions in Liberia (June 2006)

Global Witness warns the Security Council against lifting sanctions on Liberian diamonds and timber. Liberian President Ellen Johnston Sirleaf asked the UN to lift the sanctions, providing a much needed boost to Liberia's damaged economy. However, the new government has still not gained full control over these resources from former militiamen. In the past the revenue from the diamond and timber industries funded rebel groups and fueled the conflict in the county. The report recognizes the efforts by Monrovia to better regulate the trade in diamonds and timber, and stresses that its recommendations are designed to support these reforms.

An Independent Commissioned Review Evaluating the Effectiveness of the Kimberley Process (April 2006)

The Kimberly Process Certification Scheme (KPCS) has vastly reduced the market for conflict diamonds, cutting off a major source of funding for rebel groups and militias involved in conflict. Despite progress this Global Witness report warns that the KPCS is still not a "fully credible check on the international movement of diamonds." It calls for individual countries to exercise much greater scrutiny of their own internal control systems and highlights the need for much stronger checks on the activities of private industry.

Diamond Industry Annual Review - Sierra Leone 2006 (February 2006)

Diamonds fuelled Sierra Leone's rebel war between 1991 and 2002, and many hoped after the war that diamonds might help the country's recovery. Despite the new Kimberley Process diamond certification system, the diamond industry in Sierra Leone remains extraordinarily difficult to manage and control. Rebels continue to smuggle illicit gems across Sierra Leone's porous borders into Liberia. This report by Partnership Africa Canada shows that virtually all of Sierra Leone's 120,000 diamond miners earn less than a dollar a day, putting them in the category of absolute poverty. Working conditions are unhealthy and unsafe. As a result, the country remains unstable and violence threatens anew.

Broken Vows: Exposing the "Loupe" Holes in the Diamond Industry's Efforts to Prevent the Trade in Conflict Diamonds (March, 2004)

This Global Witness report denounces that major US and international jewelry retailers are paying only lip-service to combat trade in conflict diamonds. It urges governments who are signatories of the Kimberley Process to play a more active role to ensure the diamond industry's compliance with self-regulation procedures.

A Rough Trade: The Role of Companies and Governements in the Angolan Conflict (December 1998)

Here is the original report by Global Witness that called public attention to conflict diamonds, especially in Angola.

Review of the Sierra Leone Diamond Certification System and Proposals (April 25, 2001)

This report of Global Witness reviews the diamond certification system in Sierra Leone and gives recommendations to strengthen controls against conflict diamonds.

Possibilities for the Identification, Certification, and Control of Diamonds (May 15, 2000)

This working report by Global Witness addresses the issue of the diamond conflict by providing an outline for certification of the diamond trade.

Open Letter to the Security Council Concerning Sanctions against UNITA (April 14, 2000)

In response to the final report of the Angola sanctions expert panel, a group of NGOs calls on the Security Council to implement strong measures to reinforce sanctions on diamonds, arms, etc. in Angola.

The Heart of the Matter; Sierra Leone, Diamonds and Human Security (January 2000)

This report by the Partnership Africa Canada demonstrates the centrality of diamonds in the Sierra Leone war. It also includes important recommendations to governments, the UN, and the diamond industry.

Excerpts from the Report on Angola (October 26, 1999)

Published by Angola Peace Monitor

A Rough Trade: The Role of Companies and Governments in the Angolan Conflict (December 1998)

Here is the original report of Global Witness which called public attention to conflict diamonds, especially in Angola


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