Press Release / Sept. 18, 2013

Global Witness criticises easing of EU diamond sanctions

Global Witness today responded to news that the EU has agreed to lift sanctions on the Zimbabwe Mining Development Corporation. 

“The EU has rushed its decision to delist ZMDC before the dust has settled on Zimbabwe’s flawed elections. Our research indicates that ZANU PF and the military have siphoned revenues from ZMDC’s diamond ventures and that this may have financed the alleged rigging of the recent poll,” said Senior Campaigner, Emily Armistead.

She continued, “There are credible indications that at least one ZMDC joint venture company helped fund ZANU PF activities which have undermined the democratic process in Zimbabwe. The EU should have given more time to investigating these claims before lifting sanctions. Now it will be left to European consumers and jewellery companies to ensure that Zimbabwe’s tainted diamonds are not sold in our shops.”