Angola: UN Assembly Adopts Angola-Drafted Diamond Resolution
New York — The United Nations General Assembly Saturday in New York adopted a resolution on the role of diamonds in fuelling conflicts and their devastating impact on human lives, drafted by Angola in its capacity as chair of the Kimberly Process for the 2015 period.
The General Assembly also approved the report on the implementation of the Kimberly Process.
The resolution is based on an earlier one and the final communique adopted by consensus by all members during the Plenary Session of the Kimberly Process held in Luanda on November 20, 2015.
The report and the draft resolution were submitted to the General Assembly by the chairman of the Kimberly Process in 2015, Bernardo Francisco Campos.
Bernardo Campos was on the occasion accompanied by the CEO of the Angola Diamond Company (Endiama), António Carlos Sumbula, and high ranking officials of the firm and diplomats with Angola's Permanent Mission to the United Nations in New York.
In his address before the adoption of the two papers, Bernardo Campos said the report and the draft resolution that were co-sponsored by 39 UN member states, reflect the work, the remarkable progress and dynamics reached by the Kimberly Process Certification Scheme during the year 2015.
He stated that the resolution reaffirms the need to interrupt the link between illegal raw diamond trade and the armed conflicts, as a contribution to the prevention and resolution of conflicts.
According to him, the Kimberly Process is therefore crucial and deserves the General Assembly's unrestricted support.
The Kimberly Process shows that when governments, the private sector and the organisations of the civil society cooperate, they ensure that the legitimate trade of diamond helps the countries reduce poverty, promote transparency and economic development, fight trafficking and capital bleaching and reach sustainable development goals, he said.
The resolution is the result of negotiations coordinated by Angola and the commitment reached during the informal consultations, and also recognises that the international scheme of certification proposed can help guarantee the effective implementation of the UN Security Council pertinent resolutions containing sanctions on conflict diamonds.
It also increases transparency and precision of statistics, and promotes inclusion, through the expansion of the level of involvement of governments, regional organisations, diamond industry, and the civil society in the Kimberly Process.
Bernardo Campos stressed that the Kimberly Process has over the last few years scored significant progresses in fulfilling its mandate.
He mentioned as an example the lifting of the UN Security Council's ban on Côte d'Ivoire and Central Africa Republic, which has enabled these countries to resume their export of raw diamond from approved zones.
The two above mentioned countries represent an enormous progress and show the essence of the Kimberly Process that consists in allowing trade of diamonds explored legally under the auspices of legitimate governments and avoid the introduction of diamonds mined by rebels into the international market, he said.
However, according to the official who invited more countries into the Kimberly Process, several challenges still lie ahead that need the continuous effort by Governments, diamond industry and the civil society to maintain and improve the mechanisms of internal control over all members, and strengthen the system to eliminate the illegal trade of raw diamonds in the world market.
Angola's term as Kimberly Process chair ended on December 31, 2015, and has since been substituted by United Arab Emirates and Australia as deputy.