Palestine: Over 40 Asian NGOs urge UN to release names of companies profiting from Israeli settlements
42 NGOs from the East Asian, South East Asian, and South Asian regions have co-signed a statement urging the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights and the UN Secretary General to make public the names of companies that are profiting from Israeli settlements. The UN Human Rights Council adopted a resolution in 2016 requesting the High Commissioner to create a database of such companies, and the Office of the High Commissioner (OHCHR) published a preliminary report in late January 2018. However, none of the companies were named, and it has been widely reported that some states have been exerting strong pressure on the UN to stop this work.
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Author: Palestine Forum Japan
None of the companies have been named, and while the report states that OHCHR 'expects' (page 8, para. 26) to provide the names of the relevant companies, it has been widely reported that strong pressure is being brought on the High Commissioner by some UN member States not to release company names, and even to discontinue altogether work on the database.
We therefore urge the following:
- The names of all companies identified by OHCHR, including those that have been excluded in the preliminary screening, should be published immediately.
- OHCHR should continue to work closely with civil society and human rights defenders in full transparency, to ensure completion and continuous update of the database.
- The UN Secretary General and UN member states should support fully OHCHR in the above, including through the provision of resources as necessary.