After inconclusive talks in London, the government is at odds with the mine- owners and their bankers as it tries to keep the operation alive
Britain's Standard Chartered Bank is caught in the middle of an increasingly bitter feud between the Sierra Leone government and the heavily-indebted Octéa Limited, owner of the country’s biggest diamond mine at Koidu. After tense and unsuccessful talks in London starting on 16 November, Freetown officials called on Octéa, which owes about US$150 million in total, to impose a standstill at Koidu for 90 days, pending a detailed technical and financial assessment. Mining operations continue for now but officials said they feared that short-term actions by the company could endanger the mine's future.
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