[Dublin] Valentines Protest – Jewellers, End the Trade In Israeli Blood Diamonds (IPSC)
PROTEST TIFFANY’S BLOOD DIAMONDS – TIFFANY’S SOURCES DIAMONDS FROM GAZA MASSACRE FUNDER
DATE: Sat 6th February, 12pm – 4pm
LOCATION: Outside Brown Thomas (Tiffany’s branch inside), Grafton Street, Dublin 2
FACEBOOK EVENT: https://www.facebook.com/events/436474866545824/
The diamond industry is a major source of funding ($1bn/yr) for the Israeli military which is guilty of grievous human rights violations, including suspected war crimes and crimes against humanity. Despite this, jewellers claim diamonds that generate revenue used to fund the apartheid regime in Israel are conflict-free.
Tiffany’s source rough diamonds from a mine in Sierra Leone owned by Beny Steinmetz Group Resources (BSGR). BSGR “adopted” and funds a Unit of the notorious Givati Brigade in the Israeli military. The Givati Brigade was responsible for the Samouni family massacre in Gaza in 2009, and other suspected war crimes in Gaza documented by the UNHRC , Amnesty International, Human Rights Watch and the Israeli human rights organisation B’Tselem which described the Samouni family massacre as follows:
“On 4 January 2009, at the start of the ground phase of operation Cast Lead, about 100 members of the extended a-Samuni family were huddled inside one house in the a-Zeitun neighborhood of Gaza City. The next morning, an Israeli airstrike killed 21 people inside the house, including 9 children and 10 women, and injured dozens of other family members. During the next two days, the army refused access to medical teams, in spite of being informed of the terrible outcome by family members who managed to escape the bombed home and human rights and humanitarian organizations, including B’Tselem. When medics managed to get to site, they found four small children next to their dead mothers in one of the houses, and evacuated several wounded people. The army refused permission to evacuate the bodies and they remained in the rubble for a further two weeks”
As well as supporting suspected war criminals, Steinmetz has also been linked to a fraudulent bank operating in the Israeli Diamond Exchange and with accounts suspected of laundering millions of dollars in the Swiss bank HSBC. Furthermore, BSGR is also under investigation by authorities in the US, Switzerland and Guinea in relation to suspected corruption in a deal to acquire mining rights for Simandou in Guinea, the world’s largest iron ore deposit.
While the jewellery industry has acted to end the trade in “conflict diamonds”, the still legal trade in blood diamonds that fund human rights violations by rogue regimes continues unchecked under the cloak of the discredited Kimberley Process Certification Scheme.
Tiffany & Co is one of the world’s most prestigious diamond brands and claims to be a leader in the luxury jewellery market. Frédéric Cumenal, Tiffany & Co’s Chief Executive Officer, stated that Tiffany & Co has “a responsibility to set the standard for sustainable luxury” which will be “an example for others to follow”. Despite this, Tiffany & Co continues to source diamonds from BSGR.
We appeal to Tiffany & Co to sever all ties with BSGR and abide by the ethical standards their patrons and shareholders expect from a company that claims to be a leader in sustainable luxury.
Please join us outside Brown Thomas (there is a Tiffany’s branch inside) to demand they stop peddling in Israeli blood diamonds and stop their complicity in war crimes in Gaza.