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26 Mar 2015

Angola: Journalist Rafael Marques faces defamation charges over work exposing abuses in diamond industry

Rafael Marques is an independent Angolan journalist, recipient of numerous international awards including the recent Freedom of Expression award from Index on Censorship. Rafael is due to stand on trial on 24 March 2015 in Angola. He faces 11 defamation charges brought by 7 Angolan generals and 4 of their business associates over a book he wrote alleging human rights abuses in the diamond industry.   

Rafael's book “Blood Diamonds: Torture and Corruption in Angola,” details 500 alleged cases of torture and 100 killings in a diamond-mining district in Angola.  Rafael Marques filed crimes against humanity charges against the 7 Angolan generals as a result of his investigation and is being counter-sued by them.

International NGOs launched a campaign in support of Rafael's rights and Business & Human Rights Resource Centre invited leading diamond companies to issue public statements in support of Rafael.  Leber Jeweler issued a statement which you can access below.

Below is a selection of materials on the case.