Harilalaina Rakotobe dans L'Express de Madagascar
Michael Arnstein, president of the Natural Sapphire Company, says Madagascar produces about half of the world's high-end sapphires, with maybe $150 million worth of sapphires leaving Madagascar each year. "You have all these small-scale, Wild West operations," he says. "It's chaos." The latest rush for sapphires began about six months ago, leading Madagascar's government to declare the corridor's protection a national priority. With local officials unable to control the situation, CI has called for a military intervention. "We have made many requests," says Bruno Rajaspera, the group's director of projects. "But there are too many influential people that are involved in the trade of the stones. The government doesn't dare take concrete action."