Blood Ruby

In October the German news magazine "SPIEGEL" published an article entitled "Jewels of the Junta". The author maintains that the military rulers earn hundreds of millions of dollars from gems and force the local population into slave labour in government-owned mines. The logical conclusion for the writer is to call for a worldwide boycott of burmese rubies.
Naturally this article triggered vehement reactions. In internet forums ruby dealers the world over, many of whom know the situation at first-hand, discuss the pros and cons of a boycott. The bottom line is a clear rejection. Here is a compilation of the main arguments:
Recapulatory one can say that the international gem trade pretty unanimously votes for a boycott of the state-run auctions but against a general boycott of burmese rubies, a statement we at the Vienna Gem Center can only assent to.
P.s.: A TV documentary on sapphires from Madagascar shown on the French-German Arte Channel was a pleasant relief. It gladdened a gemtrader´s heart to learn how tremendously mining and trading and the influx of foreign money bettered the lives of the local population…