CONFLICT DIAMONDS 

A significant portion of globally mined diamonds comes from African countries such as Botswana, Congo, Angola, South Africa, and Zimbabwe.  The dark side of diamond production in Africa has been the involvement of governments and rebel leaders in funding numerous wars through the sale of diamonds, earning them the name “blood diamonds.” In Angola in particular, this conflict financing was a major problem. To put an end to the use of diamonds to finance wars, an export ban on diamonds from Angola was first implemented in 1998. In 2000, an international agreement was reached in Kimberley, South Africa. All exporting countries must provide transparent proof, through government-issued certificates of origin, that the proceeds from diamond sales are not being used to support criminal movements. 81 countries have signed this Kimberley Agreement for the import and export of diamonds and gemstones. In the EU, the Kimberley Agreement has also been ratified as a legally binding regulation. Acquiring diamonds within the EU through a store or an online shop greatly eliminates the likelihood of purchasing conflict diamonds. Major diamond suppliers now exclusively source diamonds from controlled mines and no longer acquire them from the open market in Africa. Simultaneously, social pressure is mounting in Africa on governments and opposition groups to ensure that the proceeds from diamond production remain within their own countries to foster modest prosperity.