Corporate Accountability

Eight transnational corporations (TNC), including the Israeli national wate rcompany Mekoort, have gone on trial on Monday in Geneva for the human rights violations they have committed around the world.

PLO Executive Committee member, Dr. Hanan Ashrawi, praised the recent announcement by Dutch water company, Vitens, to end its cooperation with Israel’s national water company, Mekorot, calling it a “necessary and moral decision”.

Mekorot is responsible for a number of violations of international law within the occupied State of Palestine. This includes the pillage of shared water resources and the denial of Palestinian access to their own water resources, in order to sustain Israel’s illegal settlements.

 

Once again Argentina has voiced its allegiance to Palestine. Argentinian Congresswoman, Dr. Maria Elena Chieno, who heads the group of Argentinean MPs on Palestine and participated as one of the testimonies in the Ethical Tribunal on Palestine arranged in Argentina submitted a new draft legislation last September.

  • EU must resist US pressure and meet obligations under international law
  • EU should take further steps to end complicity with Israeli apartheid, colonialism and occupation
  • The Dutch government has demonstrated states can prevent business involvement in illegal Israeli projects in the occupied Palestinian territory

The Palestinian Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions National Committee (BNC) has met with the Brazilian consul in Ramallah Paulo França to call on Brazil to abandon a $35m development collaboration project with Israel. The delegation urged Brazil to at least ensure that money from the project will not be diverted to Israeli companies that are implicated in human rights abuses and violations of international law.  
 

On March 21st and 22nd, graduate students at Carleton University overwhelmingly voiced their support for the Palestinian people, by voting for the university’s pension fund to divest from four companies that are complicit in the occupation of Palestine.

For background on the issue, this is from a recent Press release from the Italian Coalition Stop That Train:

On 30 November, the City Council of Rho, in the province of Milan, approved a resolution expressing “moral and political condemnation of Pizzarotti & C. S.p.A. for its participation in the project for the construction of the A1 Jerusalem – Tel Aviv railway”.

The call to divest from Elbit Systems Ltd. has become a key element of the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) movement aimed at ending Israeli occupation, colonialism and apartheid against the Palestinian people.
 

Motorola through its fully owned subsidiary Motorola Israel provides the Israeli state and its military with equipment employed in war crimes and contributes to the construction and maintenance of the Wall, the settlements and the checkpoints. The practices of Motorola clearly violate international law, including the IV Geneva Convention and the UN Covenant of Civil and Political Rights.

The second large scale Israeli public transport infrastructure project is now feeling the heat of BDS campaigners. The Israeli light rail project in Jerusalem has been since years targeted by BDS activists that support Palestinian calls for boycotts and divestments from companies that participate in this project, which links Israeli settlements to West Jerusalem and strengthens the Israeli grip on the occupied eastern part of the city.

The Norwegian Government Pension Fund Global (GPFG) has divested from two Israeli companies, Africa Israel Investments and Danya Cebus, over their involvement in construction of illegal settlements in the West Bank[1]. A government statement quoted the Norwegian Minister of Finance Sigbjørn Johnsen as saying “these companies are contributing to or are themselves responsible for grossly unethical activity.”[2] This decision follows the Norwegian Ministry of Finance’s move one year ago to exclude Israeli military contractor Elbit Systems Ltd.

Two Danish investment funds divested from Wall and settlement building companies, marking another victory in the BDS campaigns against Africa Israel and Elbit, two companies that have been targeted by BDS activists. In particular, this a critical step in the BDS campaign against companies building the Wall, opened by the Norwegian divestment last year.

The Wall and its checkpoints, observation systems, and military roads is the largest infrastructure project carried out by the Occupation authorities to date, requiring a variety of landscapers and plan¬ners; suppliers of concrete, fencing and heavy machinery; and other producers of various high-tech equipment. As of 2007, 700 different subcontractors, around 60 planning offices, 53 major construc¬tion companies, 5 wire-fence companies, 11 civilian security companies, and about 34 producers of surveillance and communications were on the payroll

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