RAPAPORT… India’s Revenue Intelligence Directorate has arrested two Indian nationals for smuggling $2 million worth of diamonds from Zimbabwe’s Marange fields, Voice of America (VoA) reported.
The two men, named as Zohra Desai, 53, and Prema Desai, 49, reportedly were caught with a consignment of 48,663 carats of rough diamonds without Kimberley Process certificates. They allegedly smuggled the diamonds from Zimbabwe through Kenya to Mumbai and were caught trying to sell the stones in Surat, VoA said.
Kimberley Process chairman, Mathieu Yamba, of the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) this past month unilaterally gave Zimbabwe the green light to export its diamonds to the objection of some western members of the organization. Members of the Kimberley Process working group for monitoring met in Dubai earlier in April to discuss the matter.
Among the sticking points at the meeting was the appointment of a new monitor for Marange to replace Abbey Chikane who resigned from the position in January. Zimbabwe says it will block attempts by the Kimberley Process to appoint British national Simon Gilberts as the new monitor.