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Report

US State Department issues guidance on implementing UN Guiding Principles for transactions linked to foreign government end-users for surveillance technology

"U.S. Department of State Guidance on Implementing the 'UN Guiding Principles' for Transactions Linked to Foreign Government End-Users for Products or Services with Surveillance Capabilities", 30 September 2020


The U.S. Department of State is committed to the promotion and protection of human rights. In that spirit, U.S. businesses should carefully review this voluntary guidance and consider whether to participate in, or continue to participate in, transactions if they identify a risk that the end-user will likely misuse the product or service to carry out human rights violations or abuses. The responsibility of U.S. businesses to respect human rights does not depend on the size, sector, operational context, ownership, or structure of the business...

U.S. businesses are encouraged to integrate human rights due diligence into compliance programs, including export compliance programs...

Review the capabilities of the product or service in question to determine potential for misuse to commit human rights violations or abuses by foreign government end-users or private end-users that have close relationships with a foreign government...

Review the human rights record of the foreign government agency end-user of the country intended to receive the product or service...

Review, including through in-house or outside counsel, whether the foreign government end-user’s laws, regulations, and policies that implicate products and services with surveillance capabilities are consistent with the UDHR...