The South African diamond conglomerate De Beers ended its 35-year-old marketing agreement with Russia on December 31, after failing to agree on a new deal with the Russian government. (The Times, January 1) Moscow continues to insist that it wants to negotiate a new deal under which De Beers would commit itself, as in the past, to purchase Russian rough diamonds at a predetermined price regardless of market conditions. (Itar-Tass, December 30) But the agreement has become bogged down in infighting between the Russian government and the authorities in Sakha (Yakutia), Russia’s largest diamond-producing region. De Beers has lost patience after waiting a year for the issue to be resolved.
Moscow Mayor Pledges Support to Bosnian Serbs.