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UN: UN Human Rights Office lists 112 companies with activities in the Occupied Palestinian Territory
Planet Labor, 13 February 2020, n°11654 - www.planetlabor.com

This controversial list (here) that was published on 12 February has been subject to intense lobbing not least by a variety of NGOs and trade union bodies that are calling for greater transparency in order to lead awareness campaigns or calls for boycott (for more on this issue c.f. article No. 10817) and other equally vigorous opponents to the publication. The list includes 112 companies, 94 of which are domiciled in Israel and 18 of which are domiciled in six other countries (United States, France, Luxembourg, the Netherlands, the United Kingdom, and Thailand). In 2016 the UN Human Rights Office was mandated to build this list of companies that are profiting from the direct or indirect enabling and facilitating of the construction and extension of settlements within the Occupied Palestinian Territory. The UN has justified the time it took to compile the list referring to ‘having held widespread discussions with numerous States, civil society organizations, think tanks, academics and others, as well as having extensive interactions with the companies themselves.’ The UNO press statement affirmed ‘The report makes clear that the reference to these business entities is not, and does not purport to be, a judicial or quasi-judicial process,’ and added that ‘Any further steps with respect to the continuation of this mandate will be a matter for the Member States of the Human Rights Council, which will consider the report during the Council’s next session.’ Amnesty International has welcomed the publication of the list, which offers fresh hope that these companies will become accountable for their actions and it is calling on the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR) and the Human Rights Council ‘to work in collaboration with other stakeholders to ensure that the list of companies is regularly updated.’