Pope Warns Africa’s Illegal Diamond Trade Abets Crime, Terrorism

140 95 Rapaport News

has warned Africa’s illegal trade in diamonds and other precious resources abets
criminal activities and terrorism while undermining political stability.

“Human selfishness” and the abuse of the poor and excluded
risked tearing Africa into pieces, the head of the Catholic church said in
Kenya November 26 during his tour of the continent.

“We cannot be silent about forms of illegal trafficking
which arise in situations of poverty and in turn lead to greater poverty and
exclusion,” he told an audience at the office of the United Nations in Nairobi.
“Illegal trade in diamonds and precious
stones,” rare metals and other important resources “fuels political
instability, organized crime and terrorism,” he said.

The Pope is also visiting Uganda and the Central African
Republic (CAR), a diamond-producing state whose rough gems have been banned
from the Kimberley Process. Non-profit group Amnesty International published a
in September claiming trafficking precious stones from the CAR still
funded violence in the country.

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