The lion that didn’t roar – can the Kimberley process stop The blood diamonds trade?
THE LION THAT DIDN’T ROAR – CAN THE KIMBERLEY PROCESS STOP THE BLOOD DIAMONDS TRADE?
The year 2017 will be the one that Australia assumes the duty of being Chair of the Kimberley Process Certification Scheme (KP). The KP is an international organisation that regulates the world’s diamond trade.
Diamonds are a symbol of love, purchased to celebrate marriage in many parts of the world, but this trade has been linked with warfare and human rights violations committed in African producer countries such as Sierra Leone, Côte d’Ivoire and Angola.
Graphic accounts of murder and mayhem, fuelled by the diamond black market, continue to emerge from the Democratic Republic of Congo, Zimbabwe, and the Central African Republic, posing an existential threat to the multibillion-dollar industry.
These human rights violations fall under the legal categories of war crimes, crimes against humanity, and genocide, the most serious crimes under international law.
In response to the grim reality of the blood diamonds trade, De Beers and other major corporate players joined with non-governmental organisations and national governments to create the Kimberley Process Certification Scheme in 2002.
The objective of the Kimberley Process is to distinguish the legitimate rough diamond trade from the trade-in diamonds linked to serious human rights abuses, known as conflict diamonds or blood diamonds.
The Kimberley Process involves a system of export and import certificates attesting to the clean character of rough diamonds and is backed up by a peer review system to monitor compliance.
The Kimberley Process has been supported through the regulatory action of national governments at the domestic level, as well as the United Nations Security Council (UNSC) and the International Criminal Court (ICC) internationally.
The first research question considered by this book is: to what extent has the conflict diamonds governance system achieved its objectives? In response, it can be said that the conflict diamonds governance system has made significant progress in its core mandate. The quantity and