With his divisive and derisive comments concerning civil society at the recent Kimberley Process (KP) mid-year meeting, the 2016 Chair of the KP, Ahmed Bin Sulayem, helped to remind the world of the critical issues facing the diamond industry. Representing the United Arab Emirates, which has come under significant scrutiny from a number of NGOs for its practices as a diamond trading hub, the Chair chose to attack and try to undermine the Civil Society Coalition. The Coalition provides an essential voice in the work of the initiative established to prevent trade in conflict diamonds, and today a number of organizations inside the Coalition and outside the KP entirely -- including NOOW partner The Enough Project -- issued a joint statement in response. The statement rejects the approach of the 2016 KP Chair and reiterates that not only will the Coalition continue to work to stop conflict diamond trade, it also intends to work on a much broader array of issues affecting the diamond sector through other initiatives and standards that deal with concerns such as human rights, forced and child labor, and transparency. The Coalition stands united with its colleagues across civil society and intends to work steadfastly to prompt change in the diamond sector, which plays an important role in both the Central African Republic and Democratic Republic of Congo.
Click here to download the joint statement in English.
Click here to download the joint statement in French.