Thursday, March 26, 2009

Four Days Left in Aketi!!!!!!

As you can tell by the title, we are about to leave Aketi really soon. We will be flying out with the chimps with MAF. They are a missionary plane service that offered to fly Laura, the chimps and me to Bukavu. From there the chimps will be at the Lwiro Sanctuary. By the time you read this entry, we will have already have flown out of Aketi. I can't post this entry now for certain reasons.

This also might be the last entry I make for the blog in Aketi. I hope that this blog let people know about our experience here and the importance of chimps. Please let people know how endangered these magnificent beings are and how that buying chimps, even if it is meant to save the chimp, just keeps the cycle of poaching and hunting going.

I also want people to know the horrible conditions that many diamond miners in Africa are working in. How disease can spread not just through Congo and Africa, but the world. Also the lack of rights that many of these workers have. Many just work for food and have barely anything to their name. If you want to buy a diamond, please ask where it came from. Even though DR Congo and many nations in Africa are not “conflict” nations and do not have “conflict diamonds”, they still have working conditions that are inhumane. These workers need guaranteed salaries, labor unions and enforced labor laws to protect them.

Many of these miners go into the forest to hunt for food, which means bush meat and chimpanzees. This is how Ebola and a strand of HIV were started. I want people to be aware of what is going on here. If we have enough people to raise awareness, we just might be able to change things.

1 comment:

Michael Cohen said...

Growing Incidence of Undisclosed Treated Diamonds in Australia

DCLA has seen an alarming increase in the number of treated diamonds being submitted as natural diamonds to the laboratory for certification.

It should first be said that diamond treatments are neither good, nor intrinsically bad in and of themselves. There is nothing wrong with buying a treated diamond, provided that the treatment is fully disclosed and that you pay the appropriate price for the diamond. Because of their lower cost and value, treated diamonds can allow a person to buy a diamond that appears to be of a higher quality than it truly is.

However, too often the presence of such diamond treatments is concealed. Whether this deception is by intent or negligence, such concealment is tantamount to fraud.

Not only does artificially treating a diamond significantly reduce its value, but most diamond treatments are unstable and reversible. For this reason, all internationally accepted rules for diamond grading forbid the certification of treated diamonds. An extremely disturbing discovery just recently in the DCLA Laboratory was that of a coated diamond accompanied by a certificate from a supposedly legitimate Australian ‘laboratory’.

Members of the diamond industry have a responsibility to consumers to convey accurate and transparent information, and each individual that handles a diamond as it moves down the diamond pipeline from the mines should be held accountable for making known any treatments that a diamond has undergone.

It is deceptive and unfair to fail to disclose treatment of a diamond when it has a significant effect on a diamond’s value. In its pursuit of consumer protection, DCLA is offering a ‘Diamond Amnesty’ for diamond owners Australia-wide – any diamond brought in with its matching diamond grading certificate will be verified for grading accuracy and tested to ensure that it is natural and free of treatments. This service will be provided free of charge.