Diamond Cables WikiLeaked

Three U.S. State Department cables discussing Zimbabwe’s diamond industry were published in December by the whistleblower website WikiLeaks. The communications portray a chaotic, violent atmosphere in the Marange diamond fields after Zimbabwe military tried to wrest control of the area from illegal diggers in 2008. A January 2009 cable quotes a tribal chief telling U.S. officials “many of his people have been killed, beaten, and arrested for dealing in diamonds.” An earlier cable notes that some diggers sought protection by “arming themselves with handguns and in some cases automatic weapons.” “Some members of the police and army have deserted in order to join the digging,” the cable says. “[Some] still wear uniforms as they search.”It concludes: “In a country filled with corrupt schemes, the diamond business in Zimbabwe is one of the dirtiest.” The cables also sugg

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