Database Pursuant Human Rights Council Resolution 31/36
On 24 March 2016, at its 31st session, the Human Rights Council (HRC) adopted resolution 31/36 entitled “Israeli settlements in the Occupied Palestinian Territory, including East Jerusalem, and in the occupied Syrian Golan”. The HRC is an intergovernmental body, made up of 47 member states. Resolutions are voted on and adopted by these member states.
Paragraph 17 of this resolution requests the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights produce a database of all business enterprises engaged in certain Israeli settlement activity in the occupied Palestinian territory, in consultation with the Working Group on the issue of human rights and transnational corporations and other business enterprises.
The High Commissioner is obligated to carry out the mandate given to him by the HRC and implement the resolution as impartially, objectively and effectively as possible.
The Scope of the Database
As specified in resolution 31/36, the parameters of the business activities to be reflected in the database are defined by paragraph 96 of the report of the Independent International Fact-Finding Mission to investigate the implications of the Israeli settlements on the civil, political, economic, social and cultural rights of the Palestinian people throughout the Occupied Palestinian Territory, including East Jerusalem (A/HRC/22/63).
Paragraph 96 of A/HRC/22/63 reads as follows:
96. Information gathered by the mission showed that business enterprises have, directly and indirectly, enabled, facilitated and profited from the construction and growth of the settlements. In addition to the previously mentioned violations of Palestinian worker rights, the mission identified a number of business activities and related issues that raise particular human rights violations concerns. They include:
- The supply of equipment and materials facilitating the construction and the expansion of settlements and the wall, and associated infrastructures
- The supply of surveillance and identification equipment for settlements, the wall and checkpoints directly linked with settlements
- The supply of equipment for the demolition of housing and property, the destruction of agricultural farms, greenhouses, olives groves and crops
- The supply of security services, equipment and materials to enterprises operating in settlements
- The provision of services and utilities supporting the maintenance and existence of settlements, including transport
- Banking and financial operations helping to develop, expand or maintain settlements and their activities, including loans for housing and the development of businesses
- The use of natural resources, in particular water and land, for business purposes
- Pollution, and the dumping of waste in or its transfer to Palestinian villages
- Captivity of the Palestinian financial and economic markets, as well as practices that disadvantage Palestinian enterprises, including through restrictions on movement, administrative and legal constraints
- Use of benefits and reinvestments of enterprises owned totally or partially by settlers for developing, expanding and maintaining the settlements
The Timing of the Report
On February 13, 2017, the Human Rights Council, pursuant to the recommendation of the High Commissioner, decided to defer consideration of the report to allow for more time to carefully consider the submissions received and to ensure a fair process for concerned stakeholders. The report is due to be submitted no later than the end of December 2017. The report would then be presented to the Human Rights Council during its 37th session in March 2018.
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