Recent reports state that at the recent WDC meeting held in Vicenza, KP Chair Gillian Milovanovic mooted the idea of a wider definition of “conflict diamonds”. She would like it to cover not just diamonds used to fuel armed conflict, but a more general one, covering “other violence” as well.
The WDC, went a step further, passing a resolution supporting Milovanovic’s call, and penned down the basis of the change as: “diamond related violence in rough diamond producing and trading areas."
While the move to widen the definition had already sounded alarm bells in many quarters, WDC’s resolution has the diamond industry seeing red, no doubt. Both in terms of the danger it represents as well as the anger it has evoked.
It hardly requires any intelligence to realise that if the proposal is implemented, the US and its allies will have most of the countries involved in the diamond industry – from mining nations to manufactures centres -- at its mercy. So large is the leeway, that almost any act of violence in the rough producing/manufacturing world in any way connected to diamonds would be enough to evoke sanctions. This is a move that could have some serious ramifications that could put both the KP system as well as the legitimate diamond industries in many countries in jeopardy.