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UN report identifies over 200 companies tied to illegal Israeli settlements and counting

23rd Feb 2018

Elham Asaad Buaras

The UN High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR) announced on January 31 it has identified 206 companies doing business linked to illegal Israeli settlements in the West Bank, where it said violations against Palestinians are “pervasive and devastating”.

The OHCHR report stated, “Businesses play a central role in furthering the establishment, maintenance and expansion of Israeli settlements, in doing so, they are contributing to Israel’s confiscation of land, facilitate the transfer of its population into the Occupied Palestinian Territory and are involved in the exploitation of Palestine’s natural resources.”

Israel fears that companies on any UN “blacklist” may become targets of boycotts or divestment aimed at stepping up pressure over its settlements, which most countries and the world body view as illegal.

According to the report the majority (143) of these companies are domiciled in Israel or the settlements with the second largest group located in the US (22).

The UN report did not identify the companies and added that its database was not yet complete. The report is to be debated at the OHCHR session on February 26.

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