Second UN Intergovt. working group meeting on proposed business & human rights treaty (24-28 Oct 2016)

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Article
24 October 2016

EU should ensure proposed binding treaty is enforceable at 2nd Intergovt. Working Group meeting, say campaigners

Author: Anne Van Schaik, Friends of the Earth Europe & Jerome Chaplier, European Coalition for Corporate Justice (ECCJ), on EU Reporter

"#StopCorporateAbuse: Why we need rights for people and rules for business", 24 Oct 2016

This week, an historic proposal will be discussed in Geneva that could hold transnational corporations and other business enterprises to account for corporate abuses under international human rights law. The UN is calling on governments to work on developing a set of legally-binding rules known as the UN treaty on business and human rights...The European Union (EU) has been reluctant to join these discussions as a bloc before, but will be present now, following pressure from organizations...During the discussion, the EU...should ensure the treaty is binding and enforceable...Access to justice should also be central, not only in victims’ own states, but in all states with jurisdiction over transnational corporations...It’s an opportunity for the EU as a whole to show it is serious about preventing corporate abuse, and ensuring the fundamental human rights of people...Friends of the Earth Europe and ECCJ will be present in Geneva alongside a broad alliance of organizations, called the Treaty Alliance, pushing for rights for people and rules for business.  You can follow developments on twitter with the hashtags #bindingtreaty and #StopCorporateAbuse...

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Author: Les Amis de la Terre

« De nouvelles négociations à l’ONU pour mettre fin à l’impunité des multinationales », 20 octobre 2016

Du 24 au 28 octobre, reprendront à Genève des négociations de l’ONU qui pourraient être une occasion historique de faire prévaloir la justice et de mettre fin à l’impunité des transnationales. En effet, elles ont comme objet la création d’un traité international contraignant sur les multinationales et les Droits de l’Homme...

...Ces pourparlers auront lieu dans un contexte critique de crises : climatique et de la biodiversité, financière, alimentaire et humanitaire, dont les transnationales sont largement responsables, mais qui touchent surtout les plus vulnérables et, en particulier, les habitants des pays du Sud. Les opérations de nombreuses entreprises aboutissent à des crimes environnementaux et à l’intimidation d’activistes qui défendent leurs droits et l’environnement, comme en témoignent les terribles événements récents au Honduras...

...De nombreuses entreprises multinationales sont plus riches et puissantes que les États qui essaient de les réglementer...

...Il est rare qu’on les oblige à assumer leurs responsabilités, tandis que les communautés et l’environnement sont toujours lésés...

[Fait aussi référence à Shell, Total]

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Item
24 October 2016

Views of the day: Debbie Stothard from fidh Thailand

Author: Red Internacional de Derechos Humanos

Item
24 October 2016

Views of the day: Fernanda Hopenhaym from Poder in Mexico

Author: Red Internacional de Derechos Humanos

Article
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Author: ESCR-Net

...La publication des dix propositions juridiques fondamentales pour le traité contient des propositions relatives à des questions cruciales telles que la primauté des droits humains sur les lois de commerce et d'investissement, le champ d'application du traité (notamment les moyens par lesquels le traité pourrait éclairer les débats polarisés sur le fait de savoir s’il est pertinent ou non d’inclure les entreprises nationales) et déterminer comment le traité pourrait aborder les responsabilités internationales des entreprises en matière de droits humains.  Cette ressource opportune couvre également des questions essentielles telles que la participation et l'accès à l'information, la diligence raisonnable en matière de droits humains, les obligations extraterritoriales, la responsabilité pénale des entreprises et la question cruciale de l'accès à la justice, y compris les principaux éléments du potentiel nouveau mécanisme international pour aborder les violations des droits humains impliquant des entreprises...

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Article
23 October 2016

Ten Key Proposals for the Treaty: A Legal Resource for Advocates and Diplomats Engaging with the UN Intergovernmental Working Group on Transnational Corporations and Other Business Enterprises

Author: Treaty Initiative

...1.  Preamble...The Treaty should include a Preamble, developed at the end of the Treaty drafting process, that contains reference to any primary concerns of civil society...2.  Primacy of Human Rights...States must reaffirm the primacy of human rights...[T]he provisions of the Treaty must supersede pre-existing obligations between States...3.  Scope of the Treaty...The scope of the Treaty should be determined with reference to the needs of rights-holders...4.  Corporate Legal Responsibility to Respect Human Rights...The Treaty must recognise that corporations have legal responsibilities to respect human rights...5.  Access to Information and Participation...States must ensure that civil society has access to relevant, sufficient, quality information in connection with each stage of corporate activity...6.  Human Rights Due Diligence...States must establish domestic legislation that legally requires corporations to identify, prevent, mitigate and account for adverse human rights impacts in line with, as a minimum, existing international standards for human rights due diligence...7.  Extraterritorial Obligations...8.  Corporate Criminal Liability...States must ensure that corporate liability for human rights abuses a) includes (among other forms) criminal corporate liability, b) that such criminal liability can extend to corporations...9.  Effective Remedies...States must ensure that people affected by human rights violations connected with corporate activity have access to adequate, effective, prompt, and appropriate remedies...10.  Remedial Mechanisms...

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Article
19 October 2016

Friends of the Earth International calls for legally binding UN treaty on Transnational corporations and human rights

Author: Friends of the Earth International

From 24 to 28 October, UN negotiations that could provide a historic opportunity for justice and an end to corporate impunity will resume in Geneva.  The talks are taking place in a critical context of global climate, biodiversity, financial, food and humanitarian crises, for which transnational corporations are largely responsible, but which impact the vulnerable most, mainly people in the Global South. Companies’ operations systematically result in environmental crimes, and the intimidation of activists defending their rights and the environment...A legally binding instrument to control transnational corporations with respect to human rights and provide victims of corporate abuse with justice is long overdue...Many transnational corporations are richer and more powerful than the states trying to regulate them. For decades, they have successfully managed to block the emergence of binding regulation through heavy lobbying and corporate capture of key decision-making processes. As a result businesses are rarely held to account and communities and the environment continue to pay the price...[W]e are calling for an international legally binding treaty to hold transnational corporations to account and end their impunity for human rights abuses and environmental crimes, and to give people access to justice...

Article
1 October 2016

Building a UN treaty on human rights and TNCs. A way forward to stop corporate impunity.

Author: The Global Campaign to reclaim peoples sovereignty, dismantle corporate power and stop impunity

This publication contains six points for consideration of the 2nd Session of the “Open-ended intergovernmental working group on transnational corporations and other business enterprises with respect to human rights” (OEIGWG)...The six points were presented by the Global Campaign to Reclaim Peoples Sovereignty, Dismantle Corporate Power and Stop Impunity (Global Campaign) as written submissions and as a contribution to the work of the OEIGWG. They express in their diversity the conviction that such a legally Binding Instrument is essential for two dimensions of the Campaign’s work: to end corporate impunity and address the systemic power of TNCs which has reached unprecedented impacts on the daily lives of affected communities...1. Treaty focus on TNCs & other Business Enterprises of international scope in relation to Human rights...2.  Extraterritorial Obligations on Governments in relation to TNCs and human rights...3.  An Instrument of Enforcement in relation to the Treaty application...4.  Obligations on Human Rights in TNC supply chains...5.  International Financial Institutions (IMF/WB) & the Trade and Investment regime (WTO/FTAs & BITS)...6.  Rights of Affected People...

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Article
1 September 2016

Statement of the Treaty Alliance on the 2nd session of the IGWG

Author: Treaty Alliance

The members of the Treaty Alliance, in preparation of the 2nd session of the Intergovernmental Working Group (Working Group) on a legally binding instrument on transnational corporations and other business enterprises (TNCsOBEs), from 24 to 28 October, 2016, call on the international community, each government individually and civil society in all countries to engage in a major effort to support the Working Group.  The growing mobilization of civil society organizations, including social movements, indigenous groups and local communities, as well as workers and their unions in the North and the South, in support of the international treaty process, reflects widespread demands for fair and robust regulation of TNCsOBEs. People urge all States, working together and individually, to meet their obligations to protect human rights against powerful TNCs-OBEs....The Treaty Alliance appreciates that a good number of States and civil society organizations are already participating in the negotiation process, but the contribution of many more is necessary for the process to succeed...The growing mobilization of civil society organizations, including social movements, indigenous groups and local communities, as well as workers and their unions in the North and the South, in support of the international treaty process, reflects widespread demands for fair and robust regulation of TNCsOBEs...

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Article
10 August 2016

Draft contribution in view of the second session of the IGWG TNCs

Author: General Secretariat, Council of the European Union

Following the Note Verbale dated 7 July requesting written contributions in preparation of the second session of the Intergovernmental Working Group on Transnational Corporations and Other Enterprises with respect to human rights, scheduled to take place on 24-28 October 2016, the European Union would like to provide the following elements...[T]he EU remains eager to engage with the Chair-Rapporteur and all regional/political groups with a view to addressing outstanding issues as soon as possible...While respecting resolution 26/9, the EU continues to believe that it is important  to ensure that the scope of the discussion and the Programme of Work are not limited to transnational corporations.  The European Union also reiterates that the Programme of Work of the second session of the Intergovernmental Working Group should include a dedicated agenda Item to reaffirm the commitment by all States to implementing the UN Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights.  Also, for a comprehensive discussion on business and human rights, it remains important that all relevant stakeholders, including NGOs, trade unions and the business community, are given a chance to contribute their views and expertise.  The EU position is also supported by a range of countries across different regions.

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