Hall Monitor

The World Diamond Congress had an upbeat closing, but it began on an odd, sour note. Rep. Tony Hall, the Ohio congressman whose CARAT Act would require every diamond in the United States to be sold with a "certificate of origin," was the congress's keynote speaker. He was the first U.S. congressman in history to either visit or address the World Diamond Congress, and while few expected his speech to be friendly, some were shocked by just how unfriendly it was. He began with a powerful recounting of the horrors he had seen first-hand in Sierra Leone. "I saw toddlers whose arms were chopped with a machete [and] adults who had lost a nose or an ear, or hands or legs," he said. "We saw a 13-year-old who had lost both her forearms-and was seven months' pregnant with a rebel's child." From there, however, he alienated many in the audience with his proposal that the industry pay "reparation
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