UN votes unanimously to lift a ban on importing Ivory Coast diamonds
In this Thursday, Sept. 19, 2013 file photo, a 118.28-carat white diamond is displayed by a model at a press preview at Sotheby's auction house in Hong Kong. (AP Photo/Vincent Yu)
The Associated Press
Published Tuesday, April 29, 2014 12:08PM EDT
The UN Security Council has voted unanimously to lift a ban on importing rough diamonds from Ivory Coast.
A resolution adopted Tuesday immediately terminates sanctions imposed in 2005 on diamond imports.
The Security Council maintained an arms embargo on the west African nation, with exceptions for the UN peacekeeping mission and disarmament efforts, and a requirement that the Ivorian government get advance UN approval for any arms shipments. It also maintained financial and travel bans.
In lifting the ban, the council welcomed "the overall progress towards restoring security, peace and stability."
Ivory Coast was split into a rebel-controlled north and government-controlled south after an attempted coup sparked civil war in 2002. A peace deal in 2007 unraveled, and the country headed to the brink of civil war in early 2011.