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Intl. Finance Corporation’s position statement on reprisals against defenders supported by Defenders in development coalition

Author: Coalition for Human Rights in Development (USA), Published on: 13 November 2018

"Release: Defenders in Development Campaign Welcomes IFC Position Statement on Reprisals", 12 Nov 2018

Human rights groups and accountability organizations welcomed the International Finance Corporation’s recently released Position Statement on Retaliation Against Civil Society and Project Stakeholders... With the statement, IFC formally adopts a no-tolerance position on reprisals – “IFC does not tolerate any action by an IFC client that amounts to retaliation – including threats, intimidation, harassment, or violence – against those who voice their opinion regarding the activities of IFC or our clients.”... Civil society members of the Defenders in Development Campaign applauded IFC’s taking a formal and public position against reprisals. In IFC’s member countries and around the world, [advocates] increasingly face threats, harassment, physical attacks, criminalization, arbitrary detention.... IFC’s Position Statement commits to the development of “internal protocols and staff guidance to raise awareness and guide action”...“We urge the IFC to develop a comprehensive and detailed approach to this issue that integrates not just the assessment of reprisal risks, and addressing risks..., but proactive engagement to prevent reprisals, robust...due diligence, reprisal-sensitive stakeholder engagement, and a response protocol so that... the institution [can] respond in a timely and effective manner..., and...prevent future attacks,” said Gretchen Gordon, Coordinator of the Coalition for Human Rights in Development.... 

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