Global Witness Pushes for Conflict Diamond Treaty

November 20, 2000

Global Witness Pushes for Conflict Diamond Treaty

Global Witness, a human rights organization working to bring international attention to the conflict-diamond issue, is urging the United Nations General Assembly today to pass a resolution to launch negotiations to establish an international treaty to regulate the import and export of diamonds. The intent is to end the trade of conflict diamonds. For negotiations to be successful, Global Witness also wants the U.N. to set a time frame for negotiations and be committed to achieving concrete solutions.

According to Global Witness, conflict diamonds are still being traded on the international market, and it's essential for the diamond industry and international governments to join together to stop the conflict diamond trade. For this to happen, Global Witness believes the U.N. needs to lead the treaty process for it to have the most impact.

"Time and time again, the United Nations has expressed the need to rid the world of this deadly trade," says Alex Yearsley of Global Witness. "Time and time again, they have asked for solutions to this problem. Finally, there's international political consensus as to what needs to be done – the establishment of an independent international certification system for the import and export of diamonds. It's vital that the United Nations, governments and the diamond industry send a clear and decisive message to the consumer that they are serious about eradicating conflict diamonds forever."

- by Julia M. Duncan