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Reclaimed AK-47 Gunmetal Jewelry To Help Disarm DRC


Fonderie 47 is an interesting experiment, a project designed to help disarm the DRC by selling high-end jewelry crafted from reclaimed AK-47 gunmetal. Featured in today's New York Times Style Section, Fonderie 47's unique approach was inspired by a 2008 trip to Kenya during which the two founders, John Zapolski and Peter Thum, were struck by the number of AK-47's they encountered.  The Small Arms Survey reports and data claims there are upwards of 20 million AK-47's in Africa today.  Thum explains:

“We saw the AK-47 as an opportunity because it’s such a successful design,” he said. “It’s something that’s globally recognizable. What better way to turn things around than with this object, which represents so many things ugly, and turn it into something beautiful?”

Their jewelry is hand crafted from the metal - the receivers, barrels and other steel components - of AK-47's from the DRC which were confiscated by the government.  It's melted down and then reshaped, with gold added, into beautiful jewelry such as rings, earrings and cufflinks, by the jewelers Philip Crangi and Roland Iten.

Sales fund weapons destruction programs operated by nongovernmental organizations which help disarm the DRC, through the nonprofit arm of the project, Fonderie 47 Foundation. Fonderie 47 has demolished around 6,000 assault rifles so far.  We're down with this mission for sure - unfortunately with rings starting at $25,600 we're gonna have to save our allowance for at least a few weeks before we can cop.

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Photo credit should read KELVIN IKPEA/AFP via Getty Images

The Netherlands Returns Nigeria's Centuries-Old Stolen Artefact

The Netherlands has returned to Nigeria a 600-year-old stolen artefact, the Ife Terracotta, which has been received by Nigeria's Minister of Information and Culture, Alhaji Lai Mohammed.

According to The Guardian Nigeria, the Netherlands has returned a 600-year-old artefact to Nigeria. This comes after the artefact was reportedly smuggled using fraudulent papers through Ghana to the Dutch country. Netherlands ambassador to Nigeria, Harry van Dijk, handed over the Ife Terracotta to Alhaji Lai Mohammed, Nigeria's Minister of Information and Culture. The repatriation of the small but "priceless" Ife Terracotta has been a long journey considering it was reportedly smuggled out of Nigeria in 2019.

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