Amnesty International report on blood diamonds in Central African Republic

By Editorial Board - 2 October 2015 at 8:57 pm
French peacekeeping soldiers, center right, patrol the city of Bangui, Central African Republic, Wednesday, Sept. 30, 2015.  42 deaths have been confirmed in Bangui since sectarian clashes erupted on Saturday between rivaling Christian and Muslim militias, but it is too dangerous for aid organizations to collect the bodies or help the wounded, according to Antoine Mbao-Bogo of The Red Cross.  Graffiti in background against the FACA Central African Armed Forces. (AP Photo)

AP Photo

Amnesty International has reported that the Central African Republic’s (CAR) biggest traders are purchasing diamonds that are worth several millions dollars without sufficiently exploring where the diamonds come from and if they support armed groups in the country. Amnesty said these armed groups are responsible for “summary executions, rape, enforced disappearances and widespread looting” in the country.

The Legal Advisor in Amnesty’s Business and Human Rights Team told Amnesty “if companies have bought blood diamonds, they must not be allowed to profit from them. The government should confiscate any blood diamonds, sell them and use the money for the public benefit. The people of CAR have a right to profit from their own natural resources. As the country seeks to rebuild, it needs its diamonds to be a blessing, not a curse.

“This is a wake-up call for the diamond sector. States and companies can no longer use the Kimberley Process as a fig leaf to reassure consumers that their diamonds are ethically sourced.”

Editorial Board

Editorial Board

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