COMMUNICATIONS NEWS: Charity pickets De Beers store launch over land evictions

Celebrities were greeted by a charity picket line at the opening of an exclusive De Beers jewellers in London last week.

Survival International is running a campaign against the eviction of Bushmen and Bakgalagadi from their homes in Botswana where De Beers mines diamonds.

Supermodel Iman, the face of De Beers, was reported in last weekend's Mail on Sunday to have withdrawn her support after being contacted by Survival International. However, the charity has yet to have this confirmed.

But it kept up the pressure on celebrities at the Old Bond Street opening despite denials by both the Botswana government and De Beers that diamonds have anything to do with the evictions, a claim the charity disputes.

Survival International spokeswoman Sophie Thomas said: "We will not stop our campaign until the Bushmen are allowed back onto their land."

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