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Consumers express faint faith in KP
Industry and consumers keep a keen eye on the forthcoming meeting
By: Diamond World News Service
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Jun 18 2010 1:30PM
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Reference: 5050  

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Many blogs and social networking websites are remarking consumer frustration towards the Kimberley Process, and a faint faith that the international certification scheme can effectively keep ‘blood diamonds’ off global markets. An online petition (tiny.cc/kpreform) has received tremendous response through signature campaigns, in recent weeks, as news spread that the Kimberley Process is likely to certify diamonds from Zimbabwe’s Marange region.

“Consumers are outraged that the Kimberley Process is not protecting the basic human rights or dignity of diamond miners. They find the ‘conflict-free’ certification to be misleading, and are appalled that nothing is being done to change the situation in Zimbabwe,” said Beth Gerstein, the founder of Brilliant Earth, a national jewelleer that sponsored the petition in response to consumer requests for a platform to voice their concerns.

This will make the forthcoming Kimberley Process Intersessional Meeting in Tel Aviv next week, of prime importance. “We are seeing a steadily growing tide of discontent with the Kimberley Process. Zimbabwe will be the final nail in the coffin for the Kimberley Process if they don’t take action next week. We’ll be back where we were 7 years ago, when the world associated diamonds with war and oppression,” said Gerstein. The growing consumer frustration adds to the same detailed by human rights advocates and even the Kimberley Process’s original architects. Zimbabwe was given a 1-year deadline to guarantee compliance with the Kimberley Process in September 2009.

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