State Department: No Connection Between Tanzanite and Terror

"We've looked at this, and there is no current evidence of any kind that shows any systematic use of tanzanite for terrorism," says Mike O'Keefe, U.S. State Department desk officer for Madagascar and Tanzania. "Of course, we wouldn't have any information if one person were trying to sell a stone here or there. But we always look for it." But others in the State Department have told the Washington Post and JCK that such a link cannot be completely disproved, and O'Keefe acknowledges that the tanzanite issue is not over. "The State Department always looks at any type of uncontrolled export. We're working with the Tanzanian government in putting in place the Tucson Tanzanite Protocols," he says. "And [in June], the government of Tanzania agreed to implement the certificate of origin [program] based on the Tucson protocols." O'Keefe hopes that uncontrolled exports will be completely elim

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