The UN General Assembly adopted a resolution on the role of diamonds in fueling conflicts

Генассамблея ООН приняла резолюцию о роли алмазов в разжигании конфликтов

Diamond mine near Koidu, Sierra Leone (File photo) The UN General Assembly adopted a resolution on the role of diamonds in fueling conflicts Peace and Security

Members of the UN General Assembly today condemned the illegal trade in diamonds, acknowledged their role in fueling conflict and reaffirmed the importance of international cooperation to certify these precious stones and prevent illicit trade in them.

Diamond Certification System

Diamonds are certified under the Kimberley Process, which is named after the city in South Africa where the first international conference on stopping the illegal trade in diamonds was held . In accordance with this mechanism, since 2003, diamonds can be mined, sold and purchased only if they have a “Kimberley certificate” confirming their legal origin.

The Kimberley Process is a unique initiative that brings together stakeholders from government, industry and civil society. Its main goal is “to prevent conflicts and eliminate conflict diamonds from legitimate trade.”

Wednesday’s resolution was proposed by Zimbabwe, which holds the 2023 Kimberley Process presidency. In 2024, the United Arab Emirates took over the presidency.

African production

Today, about 65 percent of all diamonds in the world come to world markets from the African continent . Globally, approximately ten million people are employed directly or indirectly by the diamond industry. For many African countries, diamonds are almost the only source of income.

Two thirds of the wars on the African continent over the past 30 years have been financed by the sale of diamonds and other minerals

States again called for disclosure of the source of diamonds at every stage of change of ownership to prevent illegal products from entering the international market.

The term “conflict diamonds”

Despite the existence of an international control mechanism, the diamond trade remains a serious problem that can be directly related to the incitement of armed conflicts, the activities of insurgent movements aimed to undermine or overthrow legitimate governments, and the illicit trafficking and proliferation of weapons, especially small arms and light weapons.

The Kimberley Process today faces unprecedented challenges

In his speech at the General Assembly, Deputy Director of the Department of Economic Cooperation of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs RussiaAlexander Repkin said that the resolution adopted on Wednesday “is of a technical nature.” He blamed this on “a group of Western countries” who, in his words, “decided to sabotage the entire range of multilateral cooperation in the global diamond industry in favor of their own geopolitical interests.”

“This led to the fact that during the plenary session of the Kimberley Process in Victoria Falls in November 2023, a final communiqué was not agreed upon,” the Russian representative added, stating that Western countries deliberately disrupted the adoption of this document.

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A representative of the European Union, who also spoke on behalf of several countries, including Ukraine and Moldova, recalled that the EU has allocated almost ten million euros to projects to strengthen governance measures in the diamond sector, thereby supporting the people of Côte d’Ivoire, Guinea, Liberia, Sierra Leone and the Central African Republic engaged in this industry. “However, the Kimberley Process today faces unprecedented challenges,” he said. “For the first time in history, a communiqué was not adopted by consensus at the plenary meeting.”

The essence of the disagreement lies, among other things, in the very definition of “diamonds from conflict zones,” which would reflect the changing nature of conflicts and modern realities. The European Union, as the speaker noted, calls not to give up and to continue working in this direction.


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