July 8, 1999
Officials Demand Certificates for Angolan Diamonds
The United Nations and the International Diamond Manufacturers Association announced in the same week that all diamonds leaving Angola should be sold with a certificate of origin.
The UN hopes to crack down on diamond smuggling, which has raised some $3 billion to $4 billion for the Angolan rebel group UNITA since 1992. A demand for certificates may hurt UNITA's ability to sell diamonds and therefore limit their access to arms, according to Reuters.
At the same time, industry members convening at the IDMA meeting in Moscow, Russia, this week voted unanimously to support international efforts to end violence in Angola. Delegates urged diamond industry members to refrain from purchasing Angolan diamonds without a certificate of origin issued by the government of Angola.
- by Stacey King