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UN to blacklist 190 companies doing business in occupied Palestine

United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights Zeid Ra'ad Al Hussein attends the 33rd session of the Human Rights Council at the U.N. European headquarters in Geneva, Switzerland, September 13, 2016. REUTERS/Denis Balibouse
Zeid Ra'ad Al-Hussein, the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights [REUTERS/Denis Balibouse]

Some of the biggest companies in the world, including Hewlett Packard, Motorola and Caterpillar are facing the prospect of being included on a UN blacklist of companies that violate international law for doing business in occupied Palestinian territories.

Up to 190 companies (130 Israeli and 60 international) could find themselves on the UN blacklist after the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, Zeid Ra’ad Al Hussein, sent a threatening letter to the corporations for operating in the West Bank, East Jerusalem and the Jordan Valley; areas occupied under international law.

Israeli officials and western diplomats involved in the matter, as well as companies that have been threatened with inclusion on the UN blacklist, have confirmed the letter but according to the same reports the Trump administration and Israeli officials are pushing the UN Commission on Human Rights to prevent the list’s publication.

Israeli sources say that they have gained access to parts of the list, which will be published later in the year. They include many household names and tech giants that have been accused of being complicit in Israel’s ongoing violation of human rights and international law.

Among the companies cited are HP, Hot, the Israel Aerospace Industries, Matrix Systems, Motorola, Ahava, Arison Investments, Ashdar, Clal Industries, Café Café, Cellcom, Danya Cebus, Electra, Nesher, Partner, Paz, Rami Levy, Remax, Housing & Construction (Shikun Binui), Shufersal, Sonol and Trima.

The threat of inclusion on the UN black list is one the first concrete steps taken by the UN against companies reaping rewards from Israel’s illegal occupation. While institutions like the EU have attempted to dis-incentivise companies from doing business in Israeli settlements, no direct penalty has been incurred by the hundreds of companies that profit from the suffering of Palestinians and violating international law.

Read: Amnesty urges UK to ban Israeli settlement produce

Israeli officials are concerned over the UN blacklist, seeing it as yet another sign of the global Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions movement (BDS) gaining ground. Israeli newspaper Haaretz reported senior Israeli officials saying that the potential for the BDS to scale-down business due to the blacklist is already becoming a reality. The Economy Ministry’s Office of Strategic Affairs, was reported to have received information that a number of letter-receiving companies have responded to the human rights commissioner by saying they do not intend to renew contracts or sign new ones in Israel.

“These companies just can’t make the distinction between Israel and the settlements and are ending their operations all together,” the senior Israeli official reported by Haaretz said. “Foreign companies will not invest in something that reeks of political problems – this could snowball.”

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  • Meifumado

    Biased resolutions from known antisemites have no merit.

    The absurdity of a Muslim being the head of a human rights group is laughable.

    • Kato Lee

      How can they be anti-Semites? Being pro-Palestinian is in fact pro-Semite. You are a racist because your omission denies more than 300 million of Semitic peoples their right to acknowledgement, also it is a fact that European Jews are not Semitic for the most part they are Yiddish.

      What compounds YOUR glaring absurdity is your Islamophobic attitude, you really are as stupid as you are bigoted. You have no credibility what so ever, you are obviously uneducated and a hypocrite; you’re a sad ignorant pusillanimous fool and a fascist pig to boot…

      • Meifumado

        I suggest you get a dictionary and look up the definition of the words you use before you misuse them again……..

        • Kato Lee

          Your witless babbling demonstrates you are lacking the cognitive capacity to understand the most coherent sentence, furthermore, it is you who needs a dictionary as you have misused and misspelt the word antisemite [sic]. Your own lack of aptitude for basic diction marks you out as a hypocrite and not only reconfirms your lack of credibility, but proves you’re an idiot, which seems to be a quirk among fascist pigs such as yourself.

          It’s no doubt you lack the moral courage to admit you are wrong in your logic. Jews are not the only Semitic people and are in fact among the smallest group, the fact that European Yiddish Jews coined the phrase at some point in the not too distant past does not make it correct. If you care so much about correct use of words, surely you would seek to correct that very obvious mistake and in that respect the implication that only a tiny minority of the multitudinous Semitic peoples deserve recognition as Semites to the exclusion of the vast majority.

          In reality a tiny group of Yiddish Jews sometime in the past monopolised the concept of Semitic to exclusion of all others, whatever creed or ‘ethnicity’ they may be. That in itself is discrimination by omission, a more correct term would be “anti-Judaic” as it would refer specifically to the group of ‘Semites’ you seem to be referring to, also have in mind that many are actually Yiddish and so do not even fall into the category called Semitic.

          Genetic testing shows the Palestinians [like Kurds] to be very closely related to Jews, all who have lived in the region since ancient times, and history dictates in past times, Palestinians converted to Islam [a fact Ben-Gurion knew]. It’s ironic that European Jews, who are not [maternally] related to the above mentioned Jews and are allegedly themselves converts to Judaism, discriminate against both Jew and Arab in order to grab the homeland of peoples who have coalesced in the same region for millennia. The discrimination against the Mizrahi Jews by Zionist mainly European Ashkenazi Jews who seem to be the prominent group in the state is well documented.

          I take it for granted that a supremacist misanthropic reprobate such as you will see falsehood in my statements, before you do, I suggest you use google as your first stop on the fact checking search. Although, I doubt you are possessing the intelligence to even do that much, and so I await the banal ill-conceived response of a fool, who would rather hypocritically attack my lack of good grammar than my philosophical premise*…

          *I welcome ad hominem attacks as long as they are in context with facts, after all, it’s half the fun.

          • Meifumado

            So you chose to ignore the definition?

            You do not get to decide what the definition is.

            You also state that your Arabs have been there for millennia , your Arabs invaded and migrated there and were mostly nomadic goat herders who did not hold land.

            BTW 50% of the Jews in Israel are Jews that were forced to flee for their very lives from their homes in Muslim nations in the Middle East,these Jews had lived there since before the bloodthirsty “prophet” Mohammad showed up.

            So tell me what gives the nomadic Arabs the rights to that land?
            Why did the Ottoman invite the early Jewish settlers to inhabit what was called a desolate land in need of a population if it was full of Arabs ?

            Why did the Jews have to drain the swamps?
            What were your Arabs doing ?

            Forget about the silly religious stuff the Jews and Israeli earned that land while the Arabs who now call themselves “palestinians” are only trying to steal it.

            The “pals” were offered a state ,everything they are asking for now as it happens yet they turned it down in order to attempt to commit genocide on all the Jews in the new state of Israel and to steal the dead Jews property.
            The “palestinians” are so evil they even named the day of their failure to commit genocide “Nekba” the catastrophe.

            I repeat they named the day they COULD NOT commit genocide a catastrophe…………..

          • Nash Uddin

            Wow so so so sooooooooo MUCH HATE!!!
            How can you Prophet Mohammad (PBOH) bloodthirsty!!! That is so wrong.
            You should really do some research before you start naming people.
            So ok if one person is a killer is it ok for you to be a killer as well.
            There has to be some sort of peaceful resolution.
            Muslim, Jew, Christian, Hindu, and all the other religions can we all not live a peaceful life without fighting.
            We need to set an example for our younger generations.

    • Will-o’-the-West

      Why do you say this, Melfumado? I’m not getting the joke.

      • Meifumado

        Muslims are not known for human rights as a matter of fact Islam is anti human rights.

        • Will-o’-the-West

          What’s your evidence? I’m not aware of any religion being inherently against human rights. Many actual people, of course, infringe upon other folks’ rights, but I don’t think there’s a link between whatever religion they espouse and their misbehaviour.

          • Meifumado

            Shall we quote the Quran?

            Women are inferior in Islam yes or no?

            Religion is for Islam only yes or no?

            I can continue……

          • Will-o’-the-West

            Sure, let’s quote the Quran.
            “The men and women of the believers are friends of one another. They command what is right and forbid what is wrong, keep up prayer and give the alms [zakat], and obey Allah and His Messenger. They are the people on whom Allah will have mercy. Allah is Almighty, All-Wise.” (Surat at-Tawba: 71)
            “Anyone who acts rightly, male or female, being a believer, We will give them a good life and will recompense them according to the best of what they did.” (Surat an-Nahl: 97)
            “Anyone, male or female, who does right actions and believes, will enter the Garden. They will not be wronged by so much as the tiniest speck.” (Surat an-Nisa: 124)
            “Whoever does an evil act will only be repaid with its equivalent. But whoever acts rightly, male or female, being a believer, such a person will enter the Garden, wherein they will be provided for without any reckoning.” (Surah Ghafir: 40)
            Bottom line: the Quran says all Muslim men and women face the same obligations and reap the consequences of their actions. Women are NOT inferior in the Quran.
            Of course many man-made traditions and laws have treated women as inferiors and still do, but those reflect centuries of culture and society, not the Quran. Same with any religion: the cruel behaviour of many twenty-somethings in the Israeli Defence Force does not reflect the Ten Commandments.

          • Meifumado

            So a women has the same rights as a man for inheritance and in Islamic courts?
            The Quran clearly states a women’s word is worth half a mans as well as stating that women are property to men.

            You are confusing human rights with imaginary after life beliefs.

          • Will-o’-the-West

            Nothing to do with the afterlife, but everything to do with sharia.
            Attacking the UN commissioner’s religion is not a sane response to the UN censuring corporations that break international law.

          • Meifumado

            It is when the “commissioner” is biased.

            BTW what’s this law you people keep talking of without naming?

          • Will-o’-the-West

            This idea, naming companies that profit from business in occupied territory, was not even al-Hussein’s idea. It was first proposed six years ago by U.S. law professor Richard A. Falk, when he was the UN’s special rapporteur. Naturally you’d consider Falk biased too.

            Which legal framework? We’re talking about the UN Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights. For context though, we know that Israel has also paid scant attention to the Hague Regulations of 1907 or the Fourth Geneva Convention. Other legal conventions ignored by Israel include the UN’s International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights and the International Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Racial Discrimination.

          • Meifumado

            And what of the “religion is for Islam only”?

  • charliematerne

    Where are the International Borders of “Occupied Palestine”? Where is the document that created those borders?

    • Helen4Yemen

      “Area: from the Brook of Egypt to the Euphrates”.
      Herzl Complete Diaris – page 711

      Does International law support “Greater Israel”?
      Didn’t the Ashkenazi arrive to gobble up a huge area of the Middle East?
      “Area: from the Brook of Egypt to the Euphrates”.
      Herzl Complete Diaris – page 711
      Greater Israel
      ♦ All of Palestine
      ♦ All of Jordan
      ♦ All Lebanon
      ♦ 2/3 of Syria
      ♦ 1/2 of Saudi Arabia
      ♦ Egypt up to the Nile
      And it would displace 70,000,000 who already live in those areas.
      Exodus 23:31 I will see that your borders reach from the Red Sea to the Euphrates River and from the Mediterranean Sea to the desert. I will let you defeat the people who live there, and you will force them out of the land.

      • Meifumado

        Delusional as always.

  • Vinegar Hill

    This is great news and let’s hope that the companies that are brothers in crime with Israel are brought to the surface and hopefully profits will fall.

    • Meifumado

      Great news from a biased report that has no merit?

      I am glad to break this to you but those companies are not breaking any actual laws.

  • DEADP00L

    Good. its about time the United Nations apply the law and enforce their own mandate and charter. Israel is belligerent and inhumane. Even as I write this, they are plotting in the Knesset to disenfranchise millions of non-jews from the right to vote.

    Israel has shown its true colors and will no longer be coddled like an infant. What is it doing is abominable and will be stopped. Revolutions were fought over less and entire world wars were fought for much less. Israel is not the exception no matter what it threatens the world with. It will answer to international law and meet with the standards we apply to the rest of the world and comply or it will dissolve and intervention will be necessary.

    Natanyahu and Likud did this. Israelis voted for this. They chose to violate UN resolution after UN resolution, violate international law, engaging in ethnic cleansing and deny millions of people their existence and the right to self determination.

  • Kaminoyona

    The lies and propaganda on this site are quite astounding.