National Jeweler Network

Social Issues


DEF Names New Officers, Board

JCK’s Yancy Weinrich and Signet Jewelers’ Ed Hrabak are the Diamond Empowerment Fund’s new secretary and vice president, respectively.


UAE Appoints Chair for Kimberley Process

The United Arab Emirates’ Ministry of Economy has selected Ahmed Bin Sulayem, executive chairman of the Dubai Multi Commodities Centre Authority, for the position.


Anglo American Donates to DDI

The Anglo American Group Foundation has given a three-year contribution to the Diamond Development Initiative, which promotes responsible sourcing and works to improve the lives of local miners in Africa.


KP Urges Vigilance After Fake Certificate Spotted

The Kimberley Process is calling on its members to pay special attention to any shipments of rough diamonds accompanied by a certificate from Sierra Leone after a fraudulent one surfaced in Antwerp.


Civil society orgs boycotting Kimberley Process

The organizations that comprise the KP’s Civil Society Coalition confirmed Tuesday that they won’t be participating in any organized KP events as long as the United Arab Emirates is chair.


DEF’s Vegas event to include Good Awards

The Diamond Empowerment Fund is reformatting its Las Vegas gala to encompass the Good Awards, which previously were presented at a separate event in New York.  


Alrosa executive next in line to head WDC

Alrosa’s Andrey Polyakov is the new vice president of the World Diamond Council and will succeed WDC President Edward Asscher when his term expires next year. 


DEF gives $122K to African Leadership Academy

The money, granted Sept. 25 just before the academy’s Student Indaba took place, is meant to help support the next generation of leaders in Africa through access to higher education.


UAE set to chair KP despite opposition

The United Arab Emirates is slated to lead the Kimberley Process in 2016, which is not sitting well with the non-governmental organizations (NGOs) involved in the process.


In the KP, familiar battle lines are drawn

The United Arab Emirates seems poised to become the Kimberley Process’s next chair and has struck a surprisingly conciliatory tone, though the NGOs involved in the process say concerns remain.


Cecilia Gardner stepping down from the WDC

Jewelers Vigilance Committee President Cecilia Gardner is leaving her post as general counsel of the World Diamond Council, the organization that represents the diamond industry in the Kimberley Process.


Angolan journalist receives suspended sentence

 A week after his case allegedly had been settled, a judge hit Rafael Marques de Morais with a 6-month sentence suspended for 2 years.


Angolan journalist receives suspended sentence

A week after his case allegedly had been settled, a judge hit Rafael Marques de Morais with a 6-month sentence suspended for 2 years.


Charges against ‘Blood Diamonds’ journalist dropped

Rafael Marques de Morais no longer faces 24 counts of criminal libel but had to agree not to republish his 2011 book detailing abuses in Angola’s diamond fields.


Kelly Rowland to headline DEF Las Vegas event

The Grammy Award-winning singer and former Destiny’s Child member will entertain at “Diamonds in the Sky,” scheduled to take place May 28. 


Trial of Angolan ‘Blood Diamonds’ journalist delayed

Rafael Marques de Morais, who wrote a book detailing abuses in the diamond fields of Angola, will not return to court until mid-May, if at all.


DEF offers retail material for consumer initiative

The Diamond Empowerment Fund has developed materials that can be used by retailers in their stores and online for its “Diamonds Do Good” initiative.


Journalist who exposed industry abuses now on trial

Rafael Marques de Morais, a reporter who authored a book detailing abuses in the diamond fields of Angola, now faces trial at the hands of those he implicated.


‘Diamond Squad’ head accused of money laundering

An Antwerp law enforcement official who has been spearheading investigations into wrongdoing in the diamond industry for more than a decade now finds himself on the other side of the law.


DEF announces first Indian beneficiary

The Diamond Empowerment Fund has named the nonprofit Veerayatan as the first educational institution in India to receive its funding, awarding it a $50,000 grant. 


DEF will honor Indian prime minister in Las Vegas

 The Diamond Empowerment Fund again will hold its Diamonds in the Sky Gala during Las Vegas market week, this time honoring Prime Minister Narendra Modi of India.


DEF honors two who do good

The Diamond Empowerment Fund, the organization that works to better the lives of people in diamond-producing countries worldwide, honored actress Jane Seymour and Jewelers for Children Executive Director David Rocha at its annual Good Awards. 


Belgium aiding Ivory Coast’s return

The Antwerp World Diamond Centre (AWDC) recently completed a training program for three senior officials from the government of the Ivory Coast, which saw the decade-long ban on its diamond trade lifted earlier this year.


DEF launches consumer-facing website

The Diamond Empowerment Fund now is telling the story of the good that diamonds do around the world directly to consumers.  


Kiran Gems invests in girls’ education in India

Diamond manufacturer Kiran Gems is partnering with the Smile Foundation to bring quality education to underprivileged children in India through the Mission Education program.


With grant, DDI will manage KP technical assistance

After receiving a grant from Signet Jewelers Ltd., the Diamond Development Initiative now is coordinating the technical assistance function of the Kimberley Process’ administrative arm. 


World Diamond Council names executive director

Just ahead of its annual meeting, the World Diamond Council announced that it has chosen Patricia Syvrud, a GIA graduate gemologist who owns a jewelry industry consulting firm, as its first executive director.


DEF to give $240K to educational institutions

The Diamond Empowerment Fund announced Tuesday that its board of directors approved the granting of funds to its three existing beneficiaries as well as an additional $15,000 donation to the Flaviana Matata Foundation.


DEF to honor Seymour, Rocha and JFC

Jane Seymour, David Rocha and the organization he leads, Jewelers for Children, are the recipients of the Diamond Empowerment Fund’s 2015 Good Awards, which recognize individuals for their leadership and impact on youth and communities around the world. 


World Diamond Council hiring executive director

The recently revamped World Diamond Council has begun an international search for an executive director who will handle the day-to-day management of the organization, a new role at the WDC.


Banned diamonds are entering pipeline, WDC warns

There is evidence that conflict diamonds from the Central African Republic are reaching international markets, despite the fact that trade in rough from that country was banned by the Kimberley Process more than a year ago.  


DDI: The time is now to help artisanal miners

An executive from the Diamond Development Initiative is urging industry leaders to do more to help the more than 1.5 million artisanal miners laboring under dangerous conditions in Africa and South America.  


Banned CAR diamonds intercepted in Antwerp

Belgian authorities reported Friday that they recently seized a shipment of rough stones that potentially are conflict diamonds from the Central African Republic.


DEF’s Vegas gala raises more than $1M for education

The Diamond Empowerment Fund’s mission of providing higher education to children in Africa’s diamond-producing countries got a boost in Las Vegas, with the organization’s annual gala raising more than $1 million.


GIA hires former State Dept. advisor for new role

The Gemological Institute of America now has a global director of development and beneficiation, and has tapped the former special advisor for conflict diamonds with the U.S. State Department to fill the role.


Chaka Khan to headline DEF’s Las Vegas event

The Diamond Empowerment Fund announced this week that Grammy award-winning singer Chaka Khan will perform at its “Diamonds in the Sky” gala event on May 29 in Las Vegas. 


Edward Asscher elected president of the WDC

The World Diamond Council announced Tuesday that it has a new president, vice president and treasurer following the first formal meeting of the organization’s new board of directors.


State Dept. issues alert for fake KP certificates

Diamond traders and others in the industry should be on the lookout for a fake Kimberley Process certificate numbered Sierra Leone (SL) 004199.  


Following restructuring, WDC elects new board

The members of the World Diamond Council have elected a new board of directors in the first poll conducted since the organization amended its bylaws last November. 


Ivory Coast now free to trade in diamonds

The United Nations Security Council has voted to lift the nearly decade-long ban on diamond exports from the Ivory Coast, freeing the country, which already has been cleared by the Kimberley Process, to re-enter the diamond trade. 


Report: Ivory Coast officer violating embargo

United Nations experts report that a senior Ivory Coast army officer might be using profits from diamond sales to buy arms, violating the country’s longstanding embargo just as it was getting close to returning to the diamond trade. 


DEF event scores additional sponsors

A pair of large mining companies and one of the world’s biggest retailers are among the latest industry players to pledge their support for the Diamond Empowerment Fund’s annual gala in Las Vegas.  


Diamond Development Initiative expands into the DRC

The Diamond Development Initiative, the organization working to improve the lives of artisanal miners around the globe, is partnering with Promines to improve the governance of metals mining in the Democratic Republic of the Congo, expanding the organization’s scope beyond diamonds. 


GIA again recognized for ethical practices

For the second year in a row, the Ethisphere Institute has again named the Gemological Institute of America as one of the World’s Most Ethical Companies. 


DEF, Forevermark partner for education program

Forevermark and the Diamond Empowerment Fund are teaming up and launching the Forevermark Promise Scholars program this year, which will provide assistance to DEF’s educational beneficiaries in Africa.


DEF donates $175K to educational institutions

The Diamond Empowerment Fund (DEF) has given a $175,000 grant to be split among its three beneficiaries, all of which provide higher education in diamond-producing nations.


DEF announces entertainment for 2014 Good Awards

The Diamond Empowerment Fund said that DJ M.O.S. has been selected to spin at the third annual Good Awards this January. 


No date set for tender of Marange goods

The Antwerp World Diamond Centre (AWDC) said it doesn’t have a firm date for its tender of rough diamonds from Zimbabwe’s Marange region, rebuffing reports that the sale started this week.


KP recognizes that Cote d’Ivoire is compliant

Though there is no new definition for conflict, members of the Kimberley Process did pave the way for one nation to get back into the diamond trade at last week’s plenary in Johannesburg.


Diamond manufacturer gives millions for hospital

The shareholders of Hari Krishna Exports Pvt. Ltd., a De Beers Group sightholder and diamond and jewelry manufacturer, have earmarked some funds for a very important and altruistic purpose.


WDC now restricts presidents to a single term

After being led by the same individual for more than a dozen years, the World Diamond Council (WDC), the organization created as the diamond industry’s voice on the issue of conflict diamonds, has established a term limit for its president.


‘Conflict’ definition seems unlikely to change

It’s time again for the Kimberley Process’ annual plenary meeting, and process observers say a broader definition of “conflict” diamond doesn’t seem any closer to finding the support it needs to pass this year.


Tender of Marange goods possible this year

Representatives from Zimbabwe paid a visit to Antwerp this week to discuss organizing a sale of rough diamonds from the country’s Marange region before the end of 2013.


DEF to honor Botswana president at Las Vegas event

The Diamond Empowerment Fund (DEF) announced Wednesday that it will hold a third Diamonds in the Sky event in Las Vegas next year where it will honor Botswana’s President Ian Khama. 


Rapaport to speak on undisclosed synthetics

The Gemmological Association of Great Britain (Gem-A) has announced that Martin Rapaport, chairman of the Rapaport Group, will give a speech at its November conference about the issue of undisclosed synthetics, which again has been making headlines in the trade.


IDEX Online: AWDC welcomes sanctions lift

In an official statement published Tuesday the Antwerp World Diamond Centre (AWDC) responded to the lifting of restrictive measures on the Zimbabwe Mining Development Corporation (ZMDC) by the European Union. 


New report details ups, downs of the KP

Partnership Africa Canada (PAC) recently published a report on the Kimberley Process on behalf of the KP’s civil society coalition, intended for use by the industry and the general public. 


NGO: EU lifting of Zimbabwe sanctions was rushed

A decision by European Union to lift sanctions against a state-run diamond mining company in Zimbabwe is drawing criticism from the same non-governmental organization that exited the Kimberley Process over issues in the nation. 


Designer with a heart raising funds for Zimbabwe

San Diego-based jewelry designer Alexandra Hart has a special connection to this nation, all because of meeting one extraordinary local woman. 


Belgium, EU at odds over Zimbabwe mining co.

Reuters reports that Belgium is pushing for the European Union to lift sanctions on the state-run Zimbabwe Mining Development Corp. (ZMDC) despite other countries’ concerns over alleged fraud in the July election that kept President Robert Mugabe in office.