Predatory business practices connected to rise in attacks on defenders & threat to global development goals

Author: Inés Pousadela, CIVICUS (South Africa), Published on: 20 September 2017

"Rising Attacks on Environmental Defenders Threaten Human Rights Goals Globally", 19 Sep 2017

The rise in attacks on people and groups working to protect environmental and indigenous human rights has been attributed to the heightened demand for natural resources around the world. As the global need has grown...businesses have sought new territories to expand...production...[O]ften...corporations have been able to reach extremely favorable agreements with governments competing to attract investment... Predatory and corrupt business practices that lead to human rights abuses and environmental damage are not...exclusive to transnationals....Protecting...defenders is now a most urgent human rights priority....Among...factors that defenders say give them a fighting chance against attacks are regional protection mechanisms, solidarity among environmental and other human rights, media presence...and international connections and advocacy, including the mobilization of public opinion...UN Human Rights Council should call on all UN member states to bring legislation on natural resource governance issues in line with international law, which...contains Guiding principles on business and human rights, and adopt national laws guaranteeing...protection of...defenders... If [defenders] are not supported in their efforts...goals of...2030 Agenda will remain forever beyond reach. This is a critical point...UN [HRC] needs to address as they meet during this UN General Assembly session.

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