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The controversy around Orange evades the real problem: trade with Israeli settlements

Author: FIDH, Published on: 14 June 2015

"The controversy around Orange evades the real problem: trade with Israeli settlements", 10 June 2015

Our organizations, all of them co-authors of the report "Orange’s dangerous liaisons in the Occupied Palestinian Territory," [1] denounce the Group’s backpedaling in relation to its stated desire to terminate its contract with the Israeli operator Partner, present in the illegal settlements, following unacceptable pressure exerted by the Israeli government. We regret that Orange has not publicly and explicitly recognized the risk the company runs of indirectly contributing to violations of international law due to its business relationship with Partner. The current controversy, prompted by Orange’s CEO statements during his press conference in Cairo on 3 June 2015, is regrettable in that it ignores the main problem: the illegality of Israeli settlements under international law. Our organizations recall that French companies must respect human rights wherever they operate, and that in the case of armed conflict, such as in the Occupied Palestinian Territory (OPT), they must comply with international humanitarian law. Therefore, business enterprises must ensure they do not directly or indirectly contribute to the maintenance of Israeli settlements in the OPT, which are recognized as illegal under international law and entail numerous human rights violations...

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