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Tiffany’s continues to feel the heat over connection to IDF unit accused of war crimes

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For the past two weeks people have been bombarding Tiffany’s Facebook page with questions about the company’s funding of Givati Brigade, a unit of the Israeli military that has been accused of war crimes.

At first Tiffany’s ignored the comments but as people continued posting they eventually responded as follows:

“We believe that knowing the origin of our precious metals and gemstones is key to ensuring that mines are operated in environmentally and socially responsible ways. For that reason, Tiffany has direct sourcing relationships with mines around the world. In addition, the vast majority of rough diamonds sourced by Tiffany are also cut and polished in our own state-of-the-art facilities. We believe in investing in local manufacturing, paying a living wage, transferring both craft and management skills to our workforce and contributing to the well-being of the communities in which we operate. To learn more, please visit Tiffany.com/CSR.”

Human rights activists protest outside Tiffany's on Old Bond Street in London at Christmas in 2014. (Photo: www.inminds.com)

Human rights activists protest outside Tiffany’s on Old Bond Street in London at Christmas in 2014. (Photo: www.inminds.com)

More and more comments/questions followed and Tiffany’s ignored them for a week until yesterday when they pasted a new response:

“Tiffany sources all of its rough diamonds either directly from a known mine, or a supplier with multiple known mines, because we believe that traceability is key to ensuring environmental and social responsibility. One of those sources is a mine in Sierra Leone operated by Koidu Limited – an indirect subsidiary of BSG Resources – not the Steinmetz Foundation. We condemn human rights abuses of any kind.”

This is clearly an attempt to distance Tiffany’s from the Steinmetz Foundation but as long as they continue to source diamonds from Koidu they will remain inextricably linked. Diamonds sourced from Koidu generate the revenue used by the Foundation to fund the Givati war criminals so when someone buys a Tiffany’ diamond they are buying a blood diamonds that funds war criminals.

There are demos planned in Dublin and London for tomorrow during which we will be highlighting the linkage between Tiffany’s and Israeli war crimes.

Sean Clinton

Sean Clinton is human rights activist from Ireland. He has a particular interest in the Israel/Palestine conflict and the role of the diamond industry in funding the Zionist project in Palestine. He has written several articles about the failure of the jewellery industry to ban the trade in blood diamonds that fund human rights violations by government forces.

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5 Responses

  1. truthurts on December 18, 2015, 1:08 pm

    what a beautiful sight!

  2. Jahn on December 18, 2015, 2:13 pm

    Very nice to see Tiffany & Co. exposed for using such an unethical company as the Steinmetz Group, especially when they claim to ethically source their diamonds and services. The only way they can distance themselves from this PR nightmare is to stop sourcing diamonds from Koidu/Steinmetz and in doing so, stop funding Israel’s war crimes. Until then, I will never purchase jewelry from Tiffany & Co..

  3. CigarGod on December 19, 2015, 10:24 am

    Good work.
    Sharing.

  4. JLewisDickerson on December 19, 2015, 1:51 pm

    RE: “Tiffany’s continues to feel the heat over connection to IDF unit accused of war crimes (i.e., the IDF’s Givati Brigade)”

    FOR A LITTLE BACKGROUND ON THE NOTORIOUSLY SAVAGE GIVATI BRIGADE, SEE:
    “Col. Ofer Winter: Poster Boy for IDF’s New Dirty 200, Ceasefire Dies (Again)”, by Richard Silverstein, Tikun Olam, 8/07/14

    [EXCERPT] After Operation Cast Lead, peace activists prepared a list of 200 IDF officers who played major roles in the sowing the killing fields of Gaza with blood. I’m hoping someone is right now preparing a similar list for Operation Protective Edge. The level of mass mayhem in it far exceeds that of the prior campaign. More dead, more injured, more orphans, more devastation.

    Remember this name in particular: Ofer Winter. He’s the poster boy of IDF war criminals. He was also high on the list of those accused of similar acts during Cast Lead. It was he who wrote the genocidal battle plan announced to his troops in the accompanying image:

    History has chosen for us to be the bayonet point of battle against the Gazan terrorist enemy which curses, defames and abuses the God of Israel’s military campaigns…

    God, the Lord of Israel, make our path successful, as we are about to fight for Your People, Israel, against an enemy who defames your name. In the name of the IDF fighters…make the phrase “For the Lord your God is he that goeth with you, to fight for you against your enemies, to save you.” come true, and we shall answer: Amen.

    Lest you think I overstated the term “genocidal” above, anyone who knows their Bible will recognize this language. It is the language used to describe those tribes which the Israelites wiped out in their campaign to capture the land of Israel and populate it with their offspring. Tribes like the Amalekites, Moabites, Jebusites and others were all exterminated in battles in which the ancient Jews followed what they perceived as God’s will in taking over the land.

    Winter’s Givati brigade played a key role in the slaughter in Rafah in the last week of the war in which 160 Palestinians were killed by vengeful IDF forces seeking vengeance after a Hamas attack that killed an IDF major, sergeant and captured Lt. Hadar Goldin. . .

    ENTIRE COMMENTARY – http://www.richardsilverstein.com/2014/08/07/col-ofer-winter-poster-boy-for-idfs-new-dirty-200/

  5. Kay24 on December 21, 2015, 11:20 am

    The protesters are doing an excellent job. I hope this embarrasses Tiffanys.

    There are some Tiffanys stores in the posh malls in the ME. I have seen some in Dubai and Abu Dhabi, and I think these stores should at least protest this sick relationship Tiffanys has to the violent Israeli armed forces. Shouldn’t they put humanity above making mints of money?

    It is the least they can do on behalf of their fellow Arabs (since they do not seem to be doing anything else for them).

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