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The Kimberley Process is facing demands for more action in response to global conflicts and the impact of war on the diamond industry. | Source: Dubai Diamond Exchange
The Kimberley Process is facing demands for more action in response to global conflicts and the impact of war on the diamond industry. | Source: Dubai Diamond Exchange

Under fire: Asking more of the Kimberley Process

The Kimberley Process is facing demands for more action in response to global conflicts and the impact of war on the diamond industry.

The five-day Kimberley Process intercessional meeting began on 13 May in Dubai. The KP Civil Society Coalition (KPCSC), an observer group, has questioned representatives' commitment to progress.

"This KP meeting should be a forum to evaluate the state of diamond governance, assess whether conflict diamonds are effectively banned from international trade, and give a final push to the ongoing and much-needed KP reform cycle," a statement reads.

"The KPCSC fervently hopes that the current crisis of the diamond trade will open more eyes to the urgency of expanding the long-outdated definition of conflict diamonds.

Hans Merket, Researcher / industry analyst
Hans Merket, Researcher / industry analyst
"As an observer, we’re not allowed to reveal positions that governments take within KP meetings, which means that everyone can use this veto power without having to be accountable for it."
Hans Merket, industry analyst

"Civil society expresses deep concern over the KP's failure to seriously assess its role in exacerbating or alleviating ongoing conflicts, in particular, Russia's aggression against Ukraine and the enduring conflict in the Central African Republic (CAR)."

The KPCSC walked out of a meeting in November, describing the industry association as ‘paralysed’. The UAE, now chairing Kimberley Process for the second time, has promised a year of delivery.

In a recent interview on the Rapaport Diamond Podcast, industry analyst Hans Merket described the impact of confidentiality on the Kimberley Process.

“As an observer, we’re not allowed to reveal positions that governments take within KP meetings, which means that everyone can use this veto power without having to be accountable for it,” he said.

“They don’t even have to explain why they’re against the decision. They can just simply say no.”

Merket is a researcher at Antwerp’s International Peace Information Service.

The Kimberley Process was established in 2003 and has 85 participants, including industry representatives and civil society organisations.

More reading
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Russian diamonds: Sales rise despite sanctions
Conflict in Ukraine: Russian diamond sanctions saga continues
Conflict diamonds: Chaos at Kimberley Process meeting
Russia accuses Western powers of compromising Kimberley Process
Asscher mounts defence of Kimberley Process
Reputations at stake as Russian diamond trade survives sanctions

 











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