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[Boycott - Other News]

Israeli Blood Diamonds - Christmas Protest on Old Bond Street


inminds
29 December 2014




Last month Israel's business news Globes (16th Nov 2014) reported that third quarter economic results show Israel's economy has for the first time since 2009 contracted in the wake of the genocidal assault on Gaza. The decline in GDP reflects decrease in investments and exports of goods and services right across the board. Tourism for example is down 77.5%. The only anomaly is the export of diamonds, they actually rose by 53.3% thus helping bail out the Israeli economy at this critical time when no one want to touch this genocidal regime.

It would appear that most people don't readily associate diamonds with Israel and its war crimes. The reality is that Israel's diamond industry is a main source of funding for the Israeli military ( $1 billion every year according to testimony given at the Russell Tribunal in Nov 2010).

To highlight the link between diamond jewellery and Israeli war crimes and human rights abuses being committed in Palestine, we decided to hold a rolling 'Boycott Israeli Diamonds' protest down Old Bond Street in London on the busiest shopping day of the year ( Saturday before Christmas - 20th December 2014 ), stopping at the businesses of the main peddlers of Israeli blood diamonds to reveal to the public the complicity of these companies in war crimes in Gaza.

In an exhilarating two and a half hours we protested outside five main peddlers of Israeli diamonds - De Beers, Leviev, Tiffany, Cartier and Gaff. Our moving protest lead by a 7m triple Palestinian flag poll followed by strong eye-catching banners, with loudspeaker blasting Palestinian songs interspersed with chants and speeches, sent the whole street buzzing. In a street full of jewellery stores, each jeweller was wondering if they will be the next target. At each stop we overwhelmed the security with the shop disappearing behind our wall of banners. The reaction from the public was fantastic with over 600 leaflets being taken and some members of the public even offering to donate money!

We did encounter slight opposition - a zionist who was convinced Palestine was synonymous with terrorist - clearly his plan was to goad us into a futile exchange and thereby rob us of the opportunity to engage with genuine members of the public. We didn't take the bait and ignored him. We also encountered a bizarre Christian zionist woman who came equipped with two twigs tied together to form a cross, she followed us down the road babbling about 'saving us' whilst thrusting her cross in our faces in 'vampire hunter' fashion perhaps hoping it would burn in to our faces or at least transform us in to zionists. Very amusing, again we didn't take the bait and instead continued educating the public on Israel's blood diamond industry.



"Boycott Israeli Blood Diamonds! Free Palestine!"



"Did your diamond pay for this slaughter?" - photo shows one of the survivors of the Israeli massacre at the UN School in Jabatiya in Gaza
on 30th August 2014 when 20 people were slaughtered



Boycott Israeli Blood Diamonds


Our message to London shoppers and jewellers (general message followed by specific messages for each jeweller):

Israel is one of the world’s leading producers of cut & polished diamonds. It imports rough diamonds, more than doubles their value by cutting & polishing, and exports them globally via hubs in London, Antwerp, Hong Kong, New York & Mumbai. In 2011 Israel’s net export of diamonds was worth $10 billion (30% of Israel’s manufacturing export, Israel’s #1 industry). 40-50% of diamonds purchased in the US in dollar terms are from Israel.

Most people don’t realise that diamonds sold in jewellers worldwide are bankrolling Israel’s war machine. Israeli economist Shir Hever testified at the Russel Tribunal in November 2010 that “Overall the Israeli diamond industry contributes about $1 billion annually to the Israeli military and security industries … every time somebody buys a diamond that was exported from Israel some of that money ends up in the Israeli military”. $1 billion every year! Thats $2.7 million dollars every single day that diamonds sold at jewellers like those on Bond street contribute to war crimes against children in Palestine. This summer we saw 521 children slaughtered by Israel whilst they took shelter in UN schools and in their homes.

The Kimberley Process was supposed to prevent the trade in diamonds that fund human rights violations. But the Kimberley Process's narrow definition of a “conflict diamond” excludes cut and polished diamonds. Jewellers exploit this anomaly, and deceitfully claim diamonds crafted in Israel are conflict free despite the UN Human Rights Council having found Israel guilty of war crimes and possible crimes against humanity.

The Kimberley Process needs urgent revision as at the moment its simply used to white wash Israeli blood diamonds and present them falsely as "conflict-free" and "ethical". Diamonds that fund war crimes are not conflict-free and are not ethical. Israeli diamonds bankrolled this summers genocidal slaughter of Gaza which left over 2000 people dead. Shame on the Kimberley Process for ignoring Palestinian lives!

Diamonds crafted in Israel cannot be distinguished from other diamonds. Unless a diamond is laser inscribed to identify where it was crafted or the jeweller can provide documentary evidence of where it was cut and polished, there is a high risk that the diamond you are buying is an Israeli blood diamond. The lives, the children that diamond has helped kill will forever be on your conscience - please dont buy Israeli blood diamonds. An engagement ring is meant to signify love not death and slaughter. Dont wear a trophy of Israeli butchery on your finger.

Boycott Israeli Blood Diamonds!
Boycott Israeli Blood Diamonds!


DE BEERS




Outside De Beers


De Beers holds 45% of the world's rough diamonds. It sells its diamonds to a few authorised bulk purchasers kept on a special list. The privileged companies that appear on the list are called sightholders and their purchasing quotas are called sights. Israel's leading diamond exporters Steinmetz (now called Diacore), Leo Schachter, Niru Diamonds Israel, Yoshfe Diamonds, Rosy Blue, are also all De Beers sightholders. De Beers "Forever" brand diamonds are also crafted by these same Diamantaires.

Its De Beers partnership with these Israeli companies which has enabled diamonds to become Israel's #1 industry and help fund its war machine to the tune of $1billion every year.



Speech outside De Beers

Last year De Beers presented the Queen the Jubilee Diamond crafted by De Beer's partner the Steinmetz Diamonds Group (now called Diacore) on her Jubilee to be displayed with the Crown Jewels in the Tower of London. The Steinmetz Diamond Group through the Steinmetz Foundation funds and supports the notorious Givati Brigade of the Israeli army. The Givati Brigade stands accused of war crimes and possible crimes against humanity by the United Nations Human Rights Council.

The Givati Brigade is responsible for the massacre of the Samouni family in Gaza during Operation Cast Lead. Six years ago, on 4th January 2009 the Givati Brigade rounded up 100 members of the Samouni family and ordered them into the house of Wa'el Samouni. The house was then bombed, and rescue services were prevented from approaching for four days, with ambulances being fired on. When rescue workers were finally allowed access, they found buried beneath the rubble, traumatised children besides the corpses of their parents and siblings. The Givati had massacred 29 family members and in case anyone mistook their intent they left a message on one of the remaining walls of the house, daubed in Hebrew it read "The only good Arab is a dead Arab".

The Foundation’s website boasted of "adopting" a unit of the Givati brigade, of "fostering close relationships with the commanders and their soldiers", of "buying equipment " for them specifically during Operation Cast Lead, that is, during their slaughter of the Samouni family.

All references were however deleted from their website once it came to public attention -but they cant hide their guilt -we have the evidence - see the before & after screenshots of their website on our website.

The survivors of the Samouni family in a video message asked the Queen to remove De Beer's Jubilee Blood Diamond from display and for the people of the UK to reject diamonds processed by the Steinmetz Diamond company. This lead to six months of protests outside the Tower of London until the Tower indicated that the diamond was no longer on display.

De Beer's through its partnership with Steinmetz is complicit in the funding of war crimes in Gaza.

We are here to tell De Beers to stop peddling in Israeli blood diamonds!




Outside De Beers


Outside De Beers


Outside De Beers


Steinmetz and the Samouni Family Massacre - Evidence



"On behalf of the surviving members of the Sammoni family and the hundreds of other families in Gaza who have been killed by war crimes committed by the Givati Brigade of the Israeli Army, we are shocked and disappointed by the decision of De Beers to present the Queen of England with a diamond manufactured by the Steinmetz Diamond company -- a company which supported the Givati Brigade during the Israeli war on Gaza late 2008 as they murdered 29 members of our family in cold blood. We the Sammoni family call on the Queen of England and the British people to decline this gift. We demand that De Beers be instructed to remove this offensive blood diamond display immediately.."
Helme Samouni, 10 June 2012


LEVIEV




Outside Leviev

Israel's Leviev is the world's largest cutter and polisher of diamonds. The mass profits from these Israeli blood diamonds not only go into funding Israel war machine, they are used by Leviev's owner Lev Leviev - Israel's richest man - to build illegal Jews-only settlements on stolen Palestinian land on the West Bank.

We are here to tell Leviev to stop peddling in Israeli blood diamonds and completely divest from Israel!

 



Speech outside Leviev



Outside De Beers



Outside De Beers



Outside De Beers


TIFFANY & CO




Outside Tiffany

Tiffany's is in close partnership with Israel's Steinmetz Diamonds Group. The Steinmetz Diamond Group through the Steinmetz Foundation funds and supports the notorious Givati Brigade of the Israeli army. The Givati Brigade stands accused of war crimes and possible crimes against humanity by the United Nations Human Rights Council.

The Givati Brigade is responsible for the massacre of the Samouni family in Gaza during Operation Cast Lead. Six years ago, on 4th January 2009 the Givati Brigade rounded up 100 members of the Samouni family and ordered them into the house of Wa'el Samouni. The house was then bombed, and rescue services were prevented from approaching for four days, with ambulances being fired on. When rescue workers were finally allowed access, they found buried beneath the rubble, traumatised children besides the corpses of their parents and siblings. The Givati had massacred 29 family members and in case anyone mistook their intent they left a message on one of the remaining walls of the house, daubed in Hebrew it read "The only good Arab is a dead Arab".

The Foundation’s website boasted of "adopting" a unit of the Givati brigade, of "fostering close relationships with the commanders and their soldiers", of "buying equipment " for them specifically during Operation Cast Lead, that is, during their slaughter of the Samouni family.

All references were however deleted from their website once it came to public attention -but they cant hide their guilt -we have the evidence - see the before & after screenshots of their website on our website.

The survivors of the Samouni family in a video message asked the people of the UK to reject diamonds processed by the Steinmetz Diamond company.



Speech outside Tiffany

Tiffany's helped fund Steinmetz Kiodu diamond mine in Sierra Leone by $50 million. In return Steinmetz, through its Octea company, provides Tiffany's with its cut diamonds.

Tiffany's through its partnership with Steinmetz is complicit in the funding of war crimes in Gaza.

We are here to tell Tiffany to stop peddling in Israeli blood diamonds!



Outside Tiffany



Outside Tiffany


CARTIER




Outside Cartier

Cartier sources its high end jewellery from Israel's leading diamond exporter Leo Schachter Diamonds. Leo Schachter Diamonds has received Israel's Exporter of the Year Award and last year alone accounted for nearly 6% of all Israeli diamond exports which when extrapolated suggests a contribution of nearly $60 million to the Israeli army through taxation alone.

We are here to tell Cartier to stop peddling in Israeli blood diamonds and severe its partnership with Leo Schachter Diamonds!



Speech outside Cartier



Outside Cartier



Outside Cartier

GRAFF




Outside Graff

According to the Israeli Diamond Industry "By sheer quantity, over the course of the last half-century, Graff Diamonds may have dealt with more diamonds and other precious gems than any other diamond dealer in the world". In 1998 Graff acquired a controlling stake in South African Diamond Corporation whose Israeli offices facilitates the import of cheap rough diamonds in to Israel and the export of expensive cut & polished diamonds out of Israel, with the profit in-between helping fund the apartheid state and its military.
We are here to tell Graff Diamonds to stop peddling in Israeli blood diamonds!



Speech outside Graff



Outside Graff



Outside Graff



Outside Graff



Outside Graff




Over 600 leaflets were given out








Video courtesy Damian Read


Placards, Leaflet, Banner designs




Did Your Diamond Pay For This?, 6ft x 5ft banner



Did Your Diamond Pay For This Slaughter, A2 placard



Boycott Israeli Blood Diamonds, A2 placard



Boycott Israeli Blood Diamonds Leaflet (front)



Boycott Israeli Blood Diamonds Leaflet (back)


Photos published 'live' on twitter and facebook from the protest:



For Justice in Palestine Boycott Israel


Source: www.inminds.com


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