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Draft binding treaty should make clearer reference to protection of human rights & access to remedy, says Global Partners Digital

Author: Sebastian Smart, Global Partners Digital, Published on: 4 June 2019

"The Draft Binding Treaty on Business and Human Rights: An Analysis", 5 Jun 2019

[There are] three conditions that a binding treaty would have to meet to warrant the support of human rights defenders, which we’ll be using as our framework for assessment here: 1) Strengthen the implementation of the UN Guiding Principles on Business and human rights (UNGPs); 2) Set clear participatory mechanisms for all stakeholders, including victims; and 3) Strengthen existing remedy mechanisms for victims...Given its legal nature, the articles covering the scope, definitions, jurisdiction, applicable law, rights of victims, legal liability and international cooperation require more precision if we want the treaty to set clear standards for companies and governments...[There must be] clearer reference to the protection of human rights defenders and other at-risk populations—for example, by integrating considerations of gender at a structural level...[And] if the treaty is to have a real, positive impact on the digital environment, it must clearly recognise both the progress made by the UNGPs and the universal, indivisible, interdependent and interrelated nature of human rights.

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