Blood diamonds are diamonds mined and exported from countries engaged in civil war by rebel forces. These rebels occupied blood diamond mining areas and used them to partially fund their efforts to overthrow the government.
Therefore, it is essential to take into account conflict and human rights when purchasing diamonds. Thankfully, this issue has become much less prevalent than it was just a few decades ago.
1. They are a symbol of love
Diamonds are a beloved symbol of love and commitment, as well as wealth and beauty. However, the world’s blood diamond mines produce much more than just beautiful gems – they cause civil wars, violence, worker exploitation, environmental degradation, and unspeakable human suffering.
United States Customs and Border Protection (CBP) strives to ensure that the diamond industry does not contribute to conflicts in Africa. By prohibiting the import of conflict diamonds, CBP safeguards legitimate diamond trade while keeping these dangerous gems away from consumer markets.
Blood diamonds are precious gems mined from areas controlled by forces or factions opposed to legitimate governments. These precious stones have often been used as financing for military action against these governments, leading to violent clashes, gangsters, torture and mass rape.
2. They are a symbol of commitment
Diamonds, when set in jewellery, symbolize love, commitment and wealth. However, the diamond mining industry is plagued with human rights abuses, exploitation and violence.
In 2000, the blood diamond scandal shocked people around the world. It spurred on an international certification scheme – known as the Kimberley Process – to prevent more blood diamonds from entering into circulation on the global market.
However, the blood diamond problem persists in many African nations. For instance, Zimbabwe’s conflict has resulted in a diamond trade that is filled with abuses.
This situation is causing great suffering to the local population in that region, including child labour and sex trades. Additionally, it poses serious health risks to workers due to stagnant water in mines that serve as breeding grounds for bacteria and other micro-organisms. These elements pose a grave danger to miners themselves as well as their families and children.
3. They are a symbol of wealth
Diamonds have long been seen as emblems of wealth and prosperity; however, they also carry a dark history, often linked to human rights abuses and civil wars.
Blood diamonds are diamonds mined by rebel groups who oppose international recognized governments and sold to fund their military actions. The proceeds are often used for purchasing weapons and other forms of war materiel.
The trade in rough diamonds fuels many armed conflicts throughout Africa. In the 1990s, three countries–Angola, Democratic Republic of the Congo and Sierra Leone–engaged in devastating civil wars that claimed millions of lives.
Following these conflicts, governments joined forces to end the trade in blood diamonds. They created the Kimberley Process Certification Scheme as a means of monitoring the diamond industry and preventing conflict diamonds from entering legitimate markets.
4. They are a symbol of beauty
Diamonds have long been prized for their captivating beauty and incomparable durability. Unfortunately, diamonds also come with a price: they fuel conflict and inhumane working conditions.
Blood diamonds are a type of conflict diamond that is mined in war zones and sold to fund conflicts. This trade has caused devastating harm to communities and their environment, including human rights abuses, labour exploitation, war crimes, and environmental destruction.
In the 1990s, there was an initiative to curb this illicit trade called the Kimberley Process. This resulted in numerous positive changes across Africa, decreasing the use of blood diamonds as fuel for conflict.
Despite these efforts, diamond trading remains highly profitable and widespread. That is why it is essential that you only purchase diamonds from trusted retailers who have been certified for authenticity and conflict-free status.