NGOs React to Kimberley Launch

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NGOs Cautiously Welcome the Launch of Kimberley Process

Interlaken, Switzerland, Nov. 5, 2002

Nongovernmental organizations representing a broad coalition welcomed the decision to launch the Kimberley Process Certification Scheme (KPCS) from January 1, 2003. But concerns remain.

The meeting in Interlaken was important given that the issue of conflict diamonds has been in the public eye for over four years.

NGOs welcomed industry commitment to working with governments and civil society on the private sector’s role and responsibility in tracking rough diamonds.

NGOs welcomed the commitment of most major diamond producing and trading countries to implement the Kimberley Process with effect from January 1, 2003.

NGOs are disappointed that some countries are not in a position to implement the scheme at this time. In due course, however, the countries which have not implemented the scheme will be excluded from the international diamond trade.

NGOs are deeply concerned that there is still no system for regular, independent monitoring of all national diamond control systems. Without this, the overall process remains open to abuse.

Lack of commitment to the Kimberley Process will be a betrayal of the trust placed in the process, not only by NGOs, but also by the civilians of Angola, Sierra Leone, Liberia and the Democratic Republic of Congo.

Action Aid +44.209.75617561

Amnesty International (International Secretariat) +44.20.74135500

Cenadep (DRC)

Fatal Transactions (International Secretariat, Amsterdam, the Netherlands) +31.6.19626029

Global Witness (UK) +44.(0)7968.799815

Network Movement for Justice and Development (Sierra Leone)

Oxfam International

Partnership Africa Canada (Canada) +44.(0)7730988670

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