Liberia may resume diamond exports

Review panel says controls meet, exceed KP requirements
Liberia may resume diamond exports

A United Nations draft resolution introduced by the US at the Security Council on April 18 has praised Liberia’s progress in meeting the demands of the Kimberley Process (KP), which, if passed, could see the resumption of diamond exports from the West African nation within a few months, reports Reuters.

The European Commission, which chairs the Kimberley Process this year, said that a team of experts visited Liberia from March 5 to 9, 2007 to inspect the controls put in place to keep conflict diamonds out.

In its briefing to the UN Liberia Sanctions Committee on April 13, the panel of experts concluded that Liberia’s controls meet and, in some respects, exceed Kimberley Process requirements, adding that the country has made “remarkable progress” towards preventing trade in conflict diamonds.

The resolution could be adopted within a couple of weeks, and if passed, will be followed up by a KP report on Liberia’s compliance within 90 days, following which the Security Council may review its diamond embargo.

“Liberia has put all the required safety nets in place and the Kimberley Process has given them a clean bill of health, so Liberia will no longer be associated with blood diamonds,” South Africa’s ambassador Dumisani Kumalo told Reuters.

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