Al-Haq Human Rights organization launched anÂ action alertÂ urging the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, Human Rights Council and Member States to abide by their commitments and publish the UN Database on companies involved in Israelâ€™s illegal settlements.
The campaign mentions that, in 2016, the UN Human Rights Council voted in favor of establishing a Database of companies involved in business activities with Israeli settlements in the occupied Palestinian territory (oPt). Israeli settlements are illegal under international law; a Database of businesses with activities or relationships in settlements would provide transparency for states, businesses and the public, and could be used to ensure that companies are not complicit in human rights violations and grave breaches of international humanitarian law.
AlmostÂ three years since the resolution calling for the Database, the UN has yet to publish the result of its work;Â this isÂ reportedlyÂ due to political pressure from Israel, the United States and some European states. On 4 March 2019, the High Commissioner issued a letter stating thatÂ â€śfurther consideration is necessaryâ€ťÂ to fulfil the mandate, and that her Office will continue to finalize theÂ â€śmandate in the coming months.â€ť
Last week, PNN further reports, Al-Haq sent letters to United Nations (UN) Member States with diplomatic representatives in the oPt, calling on them to urge the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, Madam Michelle Bachelet, to publicly release the UN Database of businesses engaged in activities with Israeli settlements. Al-Haqâ€™s letters came following a communication issued by the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, indicating a delay in the release of the UN Database.
Al-Haq said that these delays allow international and Israeli businesses to continue to exploit Palestinian natural resources, and contribute to and profit from Israelâ€™s impunity for its expanding colonial settlement enterprise and human rights violations.
The campaign is using the hashtagsÂ #UNGiveUsTheNamesAlready,Â #StandUp4HumanRights and #BizHumanRights,Â and suggesting that participation could be by making aÂ banner with the hashtag, uploading personal or groupÂ photosÂ holding the sign; and posting it on social media using the hashtag #UNGiveUsTheNamesAlready tagging @MBachelet and @UNHumanRights.
(photo: Al Ray archive image)
Chris Carlson is a student of religion at Mount Mercy University, United States, and has been a regular volunteer with the IMEMC since 2013. He assisted in providing extensive coverage of the 2014 Israeli military offensive on the Gaza Strip and continues, into the present day, with the issues at hand. He can be reached via email at c h r i s @ i m e m c . o r g.