06 Dec '11, 4pm

Global Witness quits Kimberley Process as Zimbabwe 'blood diamonds' exported

Global Witness quits Kimberley Process as Zimbabwe 'blood diamonds' exported

After months of failed attempts at reform, the environmental and human rights NGO Global Witness has announced its withdrawal from the Kimberley Process certification scheme (KPCS). The group was instrumental in helping set up the scheme in 2003, which was intended to prevent the international trade of conflict-ridden ‘blood diamonds’. Controversy over the scheme’s legitimacy heightened in June, when the civil society branch of the KPCS walked out of international proceedings in Kinshasa. The walk-out was in protest of the decision to allow exports from Zimbabwe’s Marange diamond fields, the reported site of various human rights abuses. Annie Dunnebacke, a senior campaigner for Global Witness, said while there were multiple reasons for the withdrawal, the issues in Zimbabwe ultimately served as the ‘catalyst’ of the NGO’s decision. ‘The situation in Zimbabwe has shone a li...

Full article: http://www.theecologist.org/News/news_analysis/1158609/gl...

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