“Blood Diamonds” and How to Avoid Buying Illicit Gems

Growing awareness that a diamond’s luster may hide an illicit past is adding another “C”—conflict—into the lexicon of gem buyers already accustomed to gauging color, cut, clarity, and carat.

“Conflict diamonds,” also known as blood diamonds, are those sold to fund armed conflict and civil war. Human rights organizations link more than four million deaths and millions more displaced people to the trade in conflict diamonds.