New York City Statue of Liberty, New York
Mrs. Ginni Thomas
Human rights Accountability 3 pager_200515 (1)
Drs. Ruud Lubbers promotes the Earth Charter
Our Moving Borders
Drs. Ruud Lubbers, Former Prime Minister Of the Netherlands & Ms. Hélène H. Oord
Is Ginni Thomas’ Expanding Activism a Problem for Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas?
US, Supreme Court Justice, Mr. Clarence Thomas & Wive Mrs. Ginni Thomas
Clarence Thomas, Associate Supreme Court Justice
Supreme Court of the United States
Religion in the Public Service: A Conversation with Clarence Thomas and John Danforth
Yale Law School Video https://vimeo.com/119576573
Clarens Thomas at the United Nations
Yale Law School Video https://vimeo.com/119576573
Silvia Alejandra Fernández de Gurmendi ICC Int’l Criminal Court, The Haque
International Criminal Court, The Haque
Bouterse Government SURINAME:
Justice 4 All
Hands of the judicial power
Handen af van de Rechterlijke Macht
SURINAME SIGN PETITION
Bouterse government SURINAME: - Stop the abuse of the Constitution - Stop the destruction of the rule of law - Stop the lie of the People - Stop destroying our future and that of our children
Regering Bouterse SURINAME:
- Stop met het misbruiken van de Grondwet
- Stop met het vernietigen van de rechtstaat
- Stop met het voorliegen van het Volk
- Stop met het vernietigen van onze toekomst en dat van onze kinderen
From Marta to us… [WUNRN] Importance to Protect Civil Society Space/Engagement at the UN Human Rights Council – Primary for Women’s Rights – High Commissioner Report – Alert on Resolution
@ACTION4SD @OliHenman @GlobalActionPW @UN_HRC @UNDP PROTECT CIVIL SOCIETY TO PROMOTE PEACE, SECURITY & DEVELOPMENT https://www.ishr.ch/news/
Date: Tue, Jun 28, 2016
Subject: [WUNRN] Importance to Protect Civil Society Space/Engagement at the UN Human Rights Council – Primary for Women’s Rights – High Commissioner Report – Alert on Resolution +
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IMPORTANCE TO PROTECT CIVIL SOCIETY SPACE/ENGAGEMENT AT THE UN HUMAN RIGHTS COUNCIL – PRIMARY FOR WOMEN’S RIGHTS – HIGH COMMISSIONER REPORT – ALERT ON RESOLUTION +
UNHCHR on CS – Link to Full 19-Page 2016 UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Report:
Practical Recommendations for the Creation and Maintenance of a Safe and Enabling Environment for Civil Society,
Based on Good Practices and Lessons Learned – Report by the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights
ATTACHED IS THE CONCERNING HUMAN RIGHTS COUNCIL RESOLUTION & SUGGESTED CIVIL SOCIETY FOLLOW UP.
International Service for Human Rights - https://www.ishr.ch/news/
PROTECT CIVIL SOCIETY TO PROMOTE PEACE, SECURITY & DEVELOPMENT – STATEMENT FOR STATES & THE UN HUMAN RIGHTS COUNCIL
30.05.2016 - A major new report by the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights spells out the essential ingredients to respect and protect civil society and ‘optimise its transformative potential’ when it comes to peace, security and development. The UN Human Rights Council and States must now respond.
(Geneva) – The global crackdown on human rights defenders and independent civil society is a threat to international peace and security and undermines sustainable development, ISHR said today.
By contrast, as demonstrated by a major new report by the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights, respect for civil society contributes to social cohesion, reduced inequality, accountable government, responsive public policy, a conducive environment for business and investment, and the empowerment of marginalised and disadvantaged groups.
‘Countries where civil society space is protected reap significant dividends,’ says the High Commissioner in the report to be tabled at the forthcoming 32nd session of the UN Human Rights Council in June. ‘Conversely, the closing of civil society space, and threats and reprisals against civil society activists, are early warning signs of instability. Over time, policies that delegitimize, isolate and repress people calling for different approaches or legitimately claiming their rights can exacerbate frustrations and lead to instability or even conflict.’
Five essential ingredients
The High Commissioner’s report, to which ISHR contributed through a major joint submission with eleven national-level NGOs, identifies five ‘essential ingredients’ to ‘optimise civil society’s transformative potential’:
1. ‘a robust legal framework compliant with international standards that safeguards public freedoms and effective access to justice’;
2. ‘a political environment conducive to civil society work’, including accountability for attacks against human rights defenders and protection against reprisals;
3. ‘access to information’ from both public and private actors;
4. avenues for civil society participation in decision-making processes at the national and international levels; and
5. ‘long-term support and resources for civil society’.
Ingredient 1: Supportive legal framework and effective access to justice
As advocated by ISHR, the High Commissioner concludes that the legal recognition of the rights to freedom of opinion, expression, peaceful assembly, association and participation in public affairs, are essential to the protection, exercise and realisation of all human rights. Accordingly, States should enact specific laws on the protection of human rights defenders, ‘review and repeal or amend all legal provisions that impede the free and independent work of civil society actors’ and ‘ensure that all legislation affecting their ability to work complies with relevant international human rights laws and standards and with the Declaration on Human Rights Defenders’.
The report also emphasises that access to justice through an independent and effective judiciary, as well as access to national human rights institutions and to regional and international human rights mechanisms, ‘is integral to a supportive legal framework for civil society actors’.
Ingredient 2: Conducive public and political environment
As also emphasised in the ISHR submission, the High Commissioner notes that the legal recognition and protection of human rights defenders and other independent civil society actors ‘must be complemented by a political culture that recognises the value of civil society and encourages its engagement’.
According to the High Commissioner, ‘addressing threats and attacks targeting civil society actors’ is essential to ‘building a tolerant culture’.
The High Commissioner makes a range of concrete recommendations in this regard that were strongly advocated by ISHR and its partners, including that States should:
- ‘demonstrate high-level political support for the independence and diversity of civic activity through public statements and public information campaigns’;
- ‘develop and implement national action plans for the implementation of the United Nations Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights’; and
- ‘ensure accountability for any acts of intimidation or reprisal against civil society actors by ensuring prompt, thorough and impartial investigations and bringing perpetrators to justice’.
Ingredient 3: Access to information, including from business enterprises and other private actors
As recognised in Article 6 of the Declaration on Human Rights Defenders, access to information is both a fundamental human right and essential to the promotion and protection of other human rights and accountability for their violation. The High Commissioner’s report reflects evolving international and national law and good practice in this regard, recommending not only that States ‘enact clear laws, regulations and policies that guarantee the proactive disclosure of information held by public bodies’, but that such laws also ‘guarantee the right to access information held by private bodies where it is essential to the exercise or protection of human rights’.
This responds both to the fact that, increasingly, private actors are implicated in the promotion, protection, realisation and violation of human rights, and that national jurisdictions such as Kenya, Sierra Leone and South Africa have already enshrined a right to access human rights information from business enterprises and other private actors in their laws or constitutions.
Ingredient 4: Participation in policy development, planning and decision-making
Civil society participation in policy development and decision-making ‘enriches both the process and outcome’, the High Commissioner says. Importantly, in line with the ISHR submission, the High Commissioner is clear that this principle applies equally to civil society participation in international human rights mechanisms and processes as at the national level. He laments that the process for NGOs to obtain UN consultative status through the NGO Committee of ECOSOC can be ‘confusing or alienating’ and ‘a barrier to participation’.
‘The deferral of a large number of NGO applications for consultative status, sometimes for years and reportedly for arbitrary reasons, has deprived international debate of important civil society contributions,’ the High Commissioner says, recommending that regional and international entities should:
- ‘ensure safe premises for civil society and provide advice in cases of threats, intimidation or reprisals’;
- ‘provide for the effective participation of civil society, in conformity with international standards of non-discrimination, the freedoms of expression, association and peaceful assembly and the right to participate in public affairs’; and
- ‘expand the transparency, through such means as webcasting, of public meetings, including, for example, meetings of the Committee on Non-Governmental Organizations of the Economic and Social Council’.
Ingredient 5: Long-term support and resources for civil society organisations
Investment in civil society is an investment in the promotion and protection of human rights and the realisation of peace, prosperity, security and sustainable development. Recognising this, the High Commissioner recommends to both States and other donors to provide long-term support and resources for civil society organisations, and to remove impediments to their functioning, including by:
- ensuring that ‘civil society actors can seek, receive and use funding and other resources, whether domestic or foreign, without prior authorisation or other undue impediments’;
- providing ‘core flexible funding to civil society organisations, with simplified procedures’;
- adopting ‘tax exemptions for civil society organisations and tax incentives for donors’; and
- integrating ‘human rights and civic education in curricula and training programmes at all levels’.
Next steps: A resolution at the 32nd session of the Human Rights Council
In response to the report, a core group of States – including Ireland, Chile, Japan, Sierra Leone and Tunisia – has announced that it will develop a resolution on the protection of civil society space at the 32nd session of the UN Human Rights Council in June.
Read together with recent reports of the Special Rapporteur on Human Rights Defenders (both in relation to restrictions on civil society actors and good practices for their protection), the High Commissioner’s new report provides the essential ingredients for a substantive and responsive resolution. ISHR and its many national-level human rights defender networks and partners look forward to working closely with the core group to achieve this.
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The wikipedia page for SIGLO XXIII is up. http://en.wikipedia.org/
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A Position Paper to Recommend the Integration of the Elimination of Racism into the Framework of the UN Sustainable Development Goals Agenda *** International Council of Women (ICW/ICF) “10km3x2 Map” SDGs UNGGIM UNSC (18 MARCH 2015 UN) Disaggregated Data
ECOPLAY. N=10. Health cohorts. URCPP
Peace always, Tamra
Geocoded Spatial Transparent Metric GSTM is a human spatial
think scale of ten kilometers cube stacked : 10km3/10km3
Unique locally 10km3x2:1m3GPS K12 and citizen science can use
MEMORY MEASURE MAP tool for data information.
International Human Rights Education Conference in the Netherlands – Promoting a Culture of Peace
January, 2016 (Vol. 9)
|January, 2016 (Vol. 9)|
|Sixth International Human Right Education Conference held in the Netherlands
Middleburg, Netherlands, December 17-19, 2015
|The three-day program attended by 222 participants was hosted by the University College Roosevelt in Middelburg, and was co-convened by the university’s Dean Prof. Dr. Barbara Oomen and Human Rights Education Associates (HREA) Executive Director Frank Elbers.
The conference was dedicated to the theme ‘Translating Roosevelt’s Four Freedoms to Today’s World. The aim was stated as being to discuss Human Rights Education (HRE) in a variety of settings, for a variety of audiences and through a range of methodologies.
Several themes emerged as the conference progressed including radicalisation and extremism and that HRE can contribute to civic skills and competencies. Another was that whilst there is a strong push to bring HRE into the formal education curriculum there is a value in non-formal education and embedding and mainstreaming a human rights perspective; the dignity and equality of all people, in all spheres should be an overarching goal of HRE. SGI participated in several panels including “Global Perspectives on HRE,” “Human Rights Pedagogy,” “Women’s Rights” and “The role of NGO’s”
|Anti-Nuclear Weapons Exhibition held in Argentina
Rioja, Argentina, November 17, 2015
| The exhibition “Everything You Treasure–For a World Free From Nuclear Weapons,” (EYT) created by SGI and the International Campaign to Abolish Nuclear Weapons (ICAN), was launched at the Castro Barros Culture Center in the province of Rioja.
The opening ceremony was attended by several government officials including the Walter Rafael Correa, Provincial Minister of Education, Science and Technology and Secretary of Environment Dr. Santiago Azulai who celebrated the occasion recognizing the importance of such nonformal education to promote the awareness of the danger of nuclear weapons.
|2016 Potential Landmark Year for Women Leaders in US and UN
By Thalif Deen, Jan 12 2016 (IPS)
|The United Nations is hoping 2016 will be a landmark year for gender empowerment – not only for the world body but also for the United States.
“The empowerment of women is real,” says UN Deputy Secretary-General Jan Eliasson of Sweden. “It is a remarkable moment where key candidates for the next President of the United States (POTUS) and for the next Secretary-General of the United Nations (SGUN) are women.”
But will this be a political reality or a floating fantasy?
Asked about history-in-the-making, UN Assistant Secretary-General Lakshmi Puri, told IPS: “Yes, it will be historic and game changing -if and when that happens, because it would be the first time ever since the founding of the UN and the USA.”…more
|This bimonthly SGI Peace News provides recent updates on SGI’s public educational activities to raise people’s awareness on issues such as nuclear disarmament, human rights, sustainable development, interfaith cooperation and humanitarian assistance.|
|Editorial Team, SGI Peace News|
SDGs: The Example of DSF’s “Blue Dot movement” fighting for Canadian Environmental Rights (Science Matters – Environmental rights are human rights)
Dear Friends and Colleagues,
Dr. P. J. Puntenney
Environmental rights are human rights
My grandparents came here from Japan at the beginning of the 20th century. Although it would be a one-way trip, the perilous journey across the Pacific was worth the risk. They left behind extreme poverty for a wealth of opportunity.
But Canada was different then, a racist country built on policies of colonization, assimilation and extermination of the land’s original peoples. My grandparents and Canadian-born parents, like indigenous people and others of “colour”, couldn’t vote, buy property in many places or enter most professions. During the Second World War, my parents, sisters and I were deprived of rights and property and incarcerated in the B.C. Interior, even though Canada was the only home we’d ever known.
A lot has changed since my grandparents arrived, and since I was born in 1936. Women were not considered “persons” with full democratic rights until 1929. People of African or Asian descent, including those born and raised here, couldn’t vote until 1948, and indigenous people didn’t get to vote until 1960. Homosexuality was illegal until 1969!
In 1960, John Diefenbaker’s Progressive Conservative government enacted Canada’s Bill of Rights, and in 1982, Pierre Trudeau’s Liberals brought us the Charter of Rights and Freedoms, with equality rights strengthened in 1985.
We should celebrate those hard-won rights. I’m happy to have witnessed much of the progress my country has made. But there’s room for improvement. And in some ways Canada has gone backward.
When I was a boy, we drank water from lakes and streams without a thought. I never imagined that one day we would buy water in bottles for more than we pay for gasoline. Canada has more fresh water per capita than any nation, but many indigenous communities don’t have access to clean drinking water.
As a boy, I never heard of asthma. Today, childhood asthma is as common as red hair. And half of all Canadians live in places with unacceptable air pollution.
I also remember when all food was organic. I never thought we’d have to pay more not to have chemicals in our food. Today we can’t avoid the toxic consequences of our industrial and agricultural activities. We all have dozens of toxic pollutants incorporated into our bodies.
We may think the highest rate of deforestation is in the Amazon but in 2014 Canada became the world leader in loss of pristine forests.
Surely, in a nation with so much natural wealth, we should expect better appreciation, treatment and protection of the air, water, soil and rich biological diversity that our health, prosperity and happiness depend on.
The right to live in a healthy environment is recognized by more than 110 nations — but not Canada. That inspired the David Suzuki Foundation and Ecojustice to launch the Blue Dot movement a little over a year ago.
It’s exceeded our expectations, with more than 100 municipalities passing environmental rights declarations and a number of provinces considering or committing to the idea. The next step is to take it to the federal level, by calling for an environmental bill of rights and, ultimately, an amendment to the Charter of Rights and Freedoms.
The environmental rights campaign is also about human rights and social justice — something recognized by the United Nations, which has appointed a special rapporteur on human rights and the environment. A country and its values are measured not by the number of extremely wealthy people but by the state of its poorest and most vulnerable. Many environmental problems are tied to societal inequities — hunger and poverty, chronic unemployment, absence of social services, inadequate public transit and often conflicting priorities of corporations and the public interest — as people at the lower end of the socioeconomic scale are disproportionately affected by environmental hazards and toxic pollution.
Canada has come a long way, but we can’t be complacent. We must work to maintain and strengthen the rights of all Canadians, to build an even better Canada. That means giving all Canadians the right to a healthy environment.
By David Suzuki with contributions from David Suzuki Foundation Senior Editor Ian Hanington.
Call to Action: Protect Human Rights, Stop TPP! on 2015, Dec 10
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UN Human Rights Office of the High Commissioner Extractive Industires — Brazil’s Toxic Mud Diaster — Everyone Responsible
Dear Friends and Colleagues,
A l’aube de la COP 21 qui se tiendra à Paris, une catastrophe écologique majeure secoue en ce moment même, dans un silence quasi assourdissant, le Brésil.
3 weeks ago, a mining disaster in Brazil resulted in a massive mudslide that
Brazil Mine Dam Disaster-Dilma’s Katrina
There is an end to the sexual abuse of children on Apoera/Suriname announced the Minister of Justice and Police (JusPol), Jennifer van Dijk-Silos on. Some of the children are victims of incest and others offered by parents to entrepreneurs for sexual services.
Juspolminister luidt alarmklok over kindermisbruik
Er komt een eind aan het seksueel misbruik van kinderen op Apoera kondigt de minister van Justitie & Politie (JusPol), Jennifer van Dijk-Silos aan. Een deel van de kinderen is slachtoffer van incest en anderen worden door ouders aangeboden aan ondernemers voor seksuele diensten.
Alarming development sexual abuse cases in-Suriname
This Human Rights Day, it’s time multinationals pay their fair share
This Human Rights Day, it’s time multinationals pay their fair share
Blog by Niko Lusiani, Director of CESR’s Human Rights in Economic Policy Program
Not long ago, speaking of tax as a matter of human rights would lead to, at best, strained looks, and at worst, outright antagonism.
|Soaring inequality has become one of the defining social ills of modern times|
Yet today, on Human Rights Day 2015, the tax justice and human rights movements are more in sync than ever before in the fight to ensure sufficient, equitable and accountable resource mobilization for human dignity and a zero-carbon future. This week all over Latin America and the Caribbean, advocates have come together to reclaim and promote tax and climate justice.
Almost every day, news reports emerge which show how corporate tax avoidance and evasion deprive countries around the world of billions of dollars in public revenue – money that could have been used to fund quality health and education for all, or for the public investments necessary to prevent catastrophic climate change. While all of us are affected, developing countries are the ones paying the highest burden for these harmful practices. But this loss of precious financing is not just a threat to governments’ starving revenue base, but also undercuts their redistributive capacities to reverse growing economic and gender inequalities. Corporate tax abuses also deepen mistrust in how fiscal policy is governed and thus how effective it can be, especially for the most disadvantaged. And crucially, these abuses limit governments’ ability to regulate companies for their environmental and climate impacts.
On this Human Rights Day, the interwoven challenges of climate change and deepening economic inequality are two of the most important threats to human rights in the 21st century. It is no coincidence that the industries serving the wealthiest sectors of the wealthiest economies bear the lion’s share of responsibility for carbon emissions today. Over 50% of the world’s carbon emissions come from the wealthiest 10% of the global population, and just 90 multinational companies reportedly caused two-thirds of the world’s carbon emissions. Theaverage carbon footprint of the richest 1% of people globally could be as much as 175 times that of the poorest 10%. Meanwhile, deepening economic inequalities within and between countries disproportionately expose the poor and most disadvantaged to the harmful effects of climate change, even though the poorest half of the global population – around 3.5 billion people – are responsible for only 10% of total global emissions attributed to individual consumption.
Fair taxation – especially fair corporate taxation – is a key element in addressing both human rights threats. Perhaps more important than any other social responsibility a company bears is its duty to pay its fair share of taxes. Yet, many multinational companies continue to profit from astounding levels of tax abuse. Between 2004 and 2013, $6.5 trillion of illicit flows stemmed from company trade fraud. In parallel, developing countries are estimated to lose $212 billion per year in direct revenue from various cross-border tax avoidance techniques.
How has this occurred? A large industry of facilitators – tax lawyers, accountants and auditing firms – has emerged over recent decades enabling multinationals to shield themselves from their national tax liabilities, out-compete domestic companies and operate where there might not otherwise be a feasible business model.
So what can be done? In simple terms, governments should ensure corporate tax practices respect human rights law. Indeed, high-profile UN officials and bar associations are increasingly invoking human rights norms and principles to challenge unjust tax policy, and company tax abuse in particular. The measures governments should take are manifold – from tax transparency to stronger enforcement against tax crimes. Most importantly, perhaps, is to confront the enabling conditions of corporate tax abuse. Among the most important external factors is the availability of offshore financial secrecy – both in traditional tax havens but also in countries like the United States. Some modest proposals for how human rights law should be adhered to in these financially secretive countries are listed here:
First, countries are obliged to respect human rights that may be put at risk due to corporate tax abuse. This would imply that those countries:
i. Implement corporate tax and financial transparency, including public registries of ultimate beneficial ownership, country-by-country reporting, and automatic exchange of tax information;
ii. Conduct systematic human rights impact assessments to monitor the spillover effects of their tax policies and agreements overseas, as the Netherlands and Ireland have already done. These should be periodic and independently-verified, with public participation in defining the risks and potential extraterritorial impacts. These impact assessments should analyze not only the revenue implications, but also the distributive and governance spillover effects of a country’s tax regime abroad.
iii. Address any harm found. If and when the main problems are identified, these impact assessments should trigger legal and policy action by including explicit recommendations for responsible parties, and clear deadlines for remedies and redress of any negative impacts discovered.
iv. Put in place robust whistleblower protections to ensure that individuals who want to share information about corporate tax practices which harm human rights are allowed to do so free of fear or recrimination.
Second, countries have a legal duty to protect against human rights harms stemming from corporate tax abuse. This would imply that, at a minimum, they mandate integrated reporting guidelines for large companies, including due diligence requirements on the human rights risks of their tax and financial arrangements. These due diligence requirements should include the users, but also the market makers and suppliers of tax abuse schemes (tax lawyers, accountants, financial intermediaries). This would simultaneously provide greater transparency and access to information for tax authorities to better do their jobs. These requirements could bestreamlined into governments’ national action plans on business and human rights.
In a fairer world, companies should compete in the global economy on the merit of their innovation, product quality and ability to improve people’s lives, rather than on the ingenuity of their tax attorneys, the opacity of their financial intermediaries, and the impunity afforded them by their governments.
- To learn more about CESR’s work on human rights in tax policy, click here.
- For updates on events taking place across Latin America and beyond as part of the tax justice campaign, click here.
The Center for Economic and Social Rights (CESR) works to promote social justice through human rights. In a world where poverty and inequality deprive entire communities of dignity, justice and sometimes life, we seek to uphold the universal human rights of every human being to education, health, food, water, housing, work, and other economic, social and cultural rights essential to human dignity.
South Bulletin: Business and Human Rights: Commencing discussions on a legally binding instrument
Report de Zayas UN Independent Expert: human rights impacts of international investment agreements, bilateral investment treaties and multilateral free trade agreements
Report and Statement UN Independent Expert de Zayas: human rights impacts of international investment agreements, bilateral investment treaties and multilateral free trade agreements
“In this report, I address the challenge to the international order posed by certain activities of investors and transnational corporations that entail much more than interference in the regulatory space of States but actually constitute an attack on the very essence of sovereignty and self-determination, which are founding principles of the United Nations.
The paradox must be confronted and resolved that whereas States have ratified human rights treaties with immediate application such as the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights and agreed on the progressive implementation of economic and social rights, they have also entered into trade and investment agreements that hinder, delay or render impossible the fulfillment of their human rights treaty obligations, thus violating the rule pacta sunt servanda.
A solution to this paradox lies in the application of article 103 of the UN Charter that stipulates that in case of conflict between the provisions of the UN Charter and any other treaty, the Charter prevails. This recognition should be strengthened and its implications further elaborated in an advisory opinion of the International Court of Justice stating that the international human rights regime prevails over other treaties and requires that all courts and arbitration tribunals interpret other agreements in the light of the erga omnes obligations ensuing from human rights treaties. An advisory opinion by the World Court should make explicit that the rule pacta sunt servanda requires that human rights treaties be fulfilled and that the principle of good faith entails an obligation on States and tribunals to interpret other treaties, including free trade and investment agreements, in a manner consistent with human rights obligations. The ICJ should further clarify which provisions of trade and investment agreements must be considered contra bonos mores and therefore invalid pursuant to article 53 of the Vienna Convention on the Law of Treaties, and removable pursuant to the doctrine of severability. The Opinion should reaffirm the principle that national and international tribunals must not give effect to judgments or arbitral awards that violate international ordre public and entail violations of human rights. The present report examines the adverse human rights impacts of free trade and investment agreements and the urgent need to reform the international investment regime, as recognized in UNCTADs Trade and Development Report and World Investment Reports for 2014 and 2015.
My forthcoming report to the General Assembly addresses the impacts of investor–State dispute settlement arbitrations. I have relied on the advice of economists and given attention to the reports of other Special Procedures mandate holders including the Working Group on the issue of human rights and transnational corporations and other business enterprises. I strongly endorse the 2011 Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights and the United Nations “Protect, Respect and Remedy” Framework. I also rely on pertinent general comments and concluding observations of treaty bodies including the Human Rights Committee, and the Committee on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights.”
|This report addresses adverse human rights impacts of international investment agreements, bilateral investment treaties and multilateral free trade agreements on the international order, both from the procedural aspect of their elaboration, negotiation, adoption and implementation, and from the substantive side, focusing on their constitutionality and effects on democratic governance, including the exercise of the State’s regulatory functions to advance the enjoyment of civil, cultural, economic, political and social rights. It calls for ex ante and ex post human rights, health and environmental impact assessments, and proposes a plan of action for systemic change.|
|Because all States are bound by the Charter of the United Nations, all treaties must conform with it, in particular with Articles 1, 2, 55 and 56. While recognizing that globalization may contribute to human rights and development, experience suggests that human rights have frequently been subordinated to dogmas of market fundamentalism with a focus on profit rather than sustainable development. Article 103 of the Charter of the United Nations stipulates that “[i]n the event of conflict between the obligations of the Members of the United Nations under the present Charter and their obligations under any other international agreement, their obligations under the present Charter shall prevail”. Accordingly, international investment agreements and investor–State dispute settlement agreements must be tested for conformity with the Charter of the United Nations and never undermine the ontological State function to ensure the welfare of all persons under its jurisdiction, nor lead to retrogression in human rights. Conflicting agreements or arbitral awards are incompatible with international ordre public, and may be considered contrary to provisions of the Vienna Convention on the Law of Treaties and invalid as contra bonos mores.|
TWN FTA Info: Terminate BITs and FTAs that Conflict with Human Rights
TWN FTA Info: Terminate BITs and FTAs that Conflict with Human Rights
Date : 22 September 2015
Terminate BITs and FTAs that conflict with human rights
Published in SUNS #8096 dated 21 September 2015
Geneva, 18 Sep (Kanaga Raja) — States should test their existing bilateral investment treaties (BITs) and free trade agreements (FTAs) for compliance under their respective Constitutions, and revise or terminate said agreements pursuant to the Vienna Convention on the Law of Treaties when they conflict with human rights obligations, a United Nations rights expert has said.
This is one of the main recommendations made by the Independent Expert on the promotion of a democratic and equitable international order, Mr Alfred de Zayas (of the United States), in his report to the Human Rights Council, which began its regular thirtieth session on Monday.
In his report, Mr De Zayas drew attention to the adverse human rights impacts of international investment agreements, bilateral investment treaties and multilateral free trade agreements on the international order, and called for ex ante and ex post human rights, health and environmental impact assessments of these instruments.
The rights expert observed that international investment agreements are not new phenomena in the international arena. Bilateral investment treaties currently number over 3,200, he said.
After years of experience with investor-State dispute settlement (ISDS), the International Centre for Settlement of Investment Disputes (ICSID) and other arbitrations, it has become apparent that the regulatory function of many States and their ability to legislate in the public interest have been compromised, Mr De Zayas further said.
“The problem has been aggravated by the chilling effect of certain awards that have penalized States for adopting regulations to protect the environment, food safety, access to generic medicine and reduction of smoking, as required under the WHO Framework Convention on Tobacco Control. The legality of such awards is questionable as contrary to domestic and international ordre public, and may be considered, in some cases, contra bonos mores [against good morals].”
According to the UN report, observers have noted retrogression in the protection of rights including the rights to life, food, water and sanitation, health, housing, education, culture, improved labour standards, an independent judiciary, a clean environment and the right not to be subjected to forced resettlement.
Moreover, there is a legitimate concern that international investment agreements might aggravate the problem of extreme poverty, foreign debt renegotiation, financial regulation and the rights of indigenous peoples, minorities, persons with disabilities and older persons and other vulnerable groups.
“Accordingly, all international investment agreements under negotiation should include a clear provision stipulating that in case of conflict between the human rights obligations of a State and those under other treaties, human rights conventions prevail,” Mr De Zayas stressed.
The report said that the 1994 North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) is an example of an agreement that has led to relocation of manufacturing industries, resulting in loss of employment in the United States (estimated at 850,000 jobs) and the proliferation of assembly centres in Mexico, known as maquiladoras, where labour costs are lower and social protection below ILO standards.
The rights expert noted that several international investment agreements are currently being negotiated, mostly in secret, including the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP), the Trade in Services Agreement (TiSA, outside the WTO), the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) and the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership.
Observers have noted grave democratic deficits with international investment agreements and investor-State dispute settlement tribunals and wondered why States continue to engage in negotiations, based on partisan studies and overly optimistic forecasts about gross domestic product (GDP) growth and employment, he said.
He noted: “Not only is there a failure of States to proactively disclose information about the agreements, but key stakeholders are excluded from the negotiating table, where mostly corporate lawyers and lobbyists participate. There is even an attempt to circumvent parliaments by ‘fast-tracking’ the adoption of these agreements, manifesting a gross absence of due process and hence of democratic legitimacy.”
INVESTOR-STATE DISPUTE SETTLEMENT (ISDS)
The rights expert said among the major threats to a democratic and equitable international order is the operation of arbitral tribunals that act as if they were above the international human rights regime. Investor-State dispute settlement tribunals are made up of corporate arbitrators whose independence has been repeatedly questioned because of conflicts of interest.
The investor-State dispute settlement system entails a completely separate system of dispute settlement, not only outside the domestic court system, but above it, and without appeal.
“Can a democracy call itself democratic if it allows the creation of separate, non-transparent and non-accountable systems of dispute settlement,” he asked.
He said that observers question the legitimacy of tribunals where the investor can sue the State but not vice versa, and that interpretations of terms such as “investment”, “expropriation” and “fair and equal treatment” have been expansive and difficult to reconcile with the interpretation rules under articles 31 and 32 of the Vienna Convention on the Law of Treaties.
Indeed, said Mr De Zayas, it is disturbing that arbitrators can disregard basic principles such as respect for the “margin of discretion” of States, State legislation and even the judicial pronouncements of the highest domestic courts.
“The one-way street of investor protection has not contributed to a culture of investor-State cooperation but fuelled an aggressive tendency to litigate and demonstrably generated a ‘regulatory chill’”.
He noted that arbitration may take place in Washington under the auspices of the World Bank’s ICSID, but there is a worrisome degree of forum-shopping, and tribunals may meet before the London Court of International Arbitration, the International Chamber of Commerce, the Stockholm Chamber of Commerce, the Hong Kong International Arbitration Centre or the United Nations Commission on International Trade Law (UNCITRAL).
The Independent Expert went on to flag a few cases in order to illustrate litigation practices and their human rights implications.
He said that one of the most egregious ICSID arbitrations concerned the case by United States-based Occidental Petroleum against Ecuador concerning the termination of an oil production site in the Amazon, and resulting in an award of $1.76 billion to Occidental ($2.4 billion with interest), which Ecuador accused of multiple human rights violations and environmental destruction.
“Only gradually are governments and parliamentarians beginning to counter the corporate move against the fundamentals of State sovereignty.”
In the European Parliament, the issue of corporate blackmail has been raised in connection with the debate on the TTIP, arguing on the basis of Vattenfall and Veolia that multinational companies are using investor protection rules to achieve corporate aims, increasing the cost to the taxpayer of defending public policy and rules.
“In this context, it must be stressed that the possibility that arbitrations may find for the State and against the investor does not remove the danger nor legitimize the investor-State dispute settlement model, since the mere threat of such arbitration has dissuaded even developed States like Canada from adopting social legislation. Developing countries are even more vulnerable to the threat, since they lack the resources to defend themselves against major transnational enterprises.”
The rights expert underlined that the manifest abuse of rights by investors is so brazen that one could imagine that one day the military-industrial complex might invoke investor-State dispute settlement when a country decides to reduce or terminate the production of anti-personnel landmines or cluster bombs because they are contrary to international humanitarian law, thus “expropriating” expected profits of the arms industry.
It is not just a question of reforming the investor-State dispute settlement system for the future, but imperative to review and revise existing bilateral investment treaties and free trade agreements, which were never intended to become prisons for States.
“If investor-State dispute settlement and ICSID have since mutated into institutions of economic coercion, they must be dismantled and reinvented through the Vienna Convention on the Law of Treaties.”
The report said although bilateral investment treaties and free trade agreements have been on the international agenda for decades, their human rights impacts have been under-reported.
“Apparently the siren call of potential profit and the over-optimistic forecasts promising GDP growth and significant creation of jobs have been so seductive to some governments that human rights considerations have been neglected and State functions compromised.”
The rights expert said that the large body of existing human rights treaties, protocols and declarations create a constitutional framework that must be taken into account whenever a State enters into agreements with other States and/or private-sector actors, including financial institutions and transnational enterprises.
“The human rights regime, including international and regional human rights treaties and the relevant ILO and WHO Conventions, must be treated as superior to other agreements, including bilateral investment treaties and free trade agreements. National courts and international tribunals and arbitration instances must be subordinated to this regime.”
The report said among the rights that States must ensure are the rights to life, security of person, participation in the conduct of public affairs, homeland, movement, health, education, employment and social security. These commitments are enshrined, inter alia, in articles 1, 2, 6, 9, 12, 17, 25, 26, 27 of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights and articles 1, 2, 5, 6, 7, 9, 10, 11, 12 and 13 of the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights.
The process of elaboration, negotiation and adoption of bilateral investment treaties and free trade agreements must conform with the requirement of article 25 (a) of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights to ensure participation by all stakeholders.
This entails a proactive obligation on the part of Governments to disclose the necessary information and facilitate public participation. Access to information is an essential condition for the exercise of the right of freedom of opinion and expression under article 19 of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights.
The report said: “Trade negotiations conducted in secret (although not a matter of national security!) and excluding key stakeholders entail prima facie violations of articles 19 and 25 of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights.”
Mr De Zayas said democracy is not exercised only once in a while, but entails a continuing dialogue between representatives and constituents. Had it not been for Wikileaks publishing several chapters of the free trade agreements under discussion, the necessary public debate could not even have gotten started.
BOLD SOLUTIONS NEEDED
The report said extraordinary problems require bold solutions. Anti-democratic investor-State dispute settlement paroxysms can be neutralized by revision or termination of such dispute settlement.
It added that if States can adopt extraordinary measures such as bailing out delinquent banks, a fortiori they can adopt measures to protect the welfare of the population.
“Protective actions by a State whose economy, agriculture or industry is in danger of failure because of the sometimes unpredictable effects of bilateral investment treaties and free trade agreements may be justifiable under the force majeure principle.”
The validity of bilateral investment treaties and free trade agreements should be tested under the rules of the Vienna Convention on the Law of Treaties.
For instance, a treaty may be void if it can be established that there was a manifest violation of the State’s Constitution, errors relating to a fact or situation which was assumed to exist at the time the treaty was concluded and which formed an essential basis of its consent to be bound to the treaty (art. 48), fraudulent conduct by a negotiating party (art. 49), deliberately misleading or spurious claims, corruption (art. 50), coercion (arts. 51-52) or conflict with a peremptory norm of international law (art. 53).
Treaties may also be terminated or their application suspended pursuant to the doctrine of material breach (art. 60), subsequent impossibility of performance (art. 61) or fundamental change of circumstances (art. 62).
Normally, treaties contain provisions for denunciation or withdrawal. In the absence of such provisions, such a right may be implied by the nature of the treaty (art. 56).
“To the extent that bilateral investment treaties and free trade agreements lead to violations of human rights, they should be modified or terminated,” said the rights expert.
“Are States or some transnational corporations guilty of ‘conspiracy’? Actions in pursuance of such conspiracy could include deliberately giving false information; issuing false forecasts of GDP and employment growth; engaging think tanks, economists, universities or foundations in preparing ‘teleological reports’; and colluding with media conglomerates to ensure that only the ‘sunny’ side of bilateral investment treaties and free trade agreements is presented and contentious issues are suppressed or minimized.”
Thus, to the extent that there was inadequate disclosure of the risks, false representations and overly optimistic growth forecasts, there was no informed consent and the Vienna Convention on the Law of Treaties provides grounds for modification or termination, said the report.
Substantively, it added, investor-State dispute settlement tribunals cannot immunize investors from responsibility to make amends for damage caused, and the “polluter pays” principle cannot be trumped by a claim that paying fines is tantamount to an “expropriation”. Such a claim would be rejected by any independent tribunal as blatantly frivolous and contrary to ordre public.
“Pursuant to this analysis, the denunciation of international investment agreements is not only legitimate but also legal and their ‘survival clauses’ must be seen as null and void when they are intended to perpetuate a system that violates human rights.”
Bearing in mind that the essence of capitalism and investment is risk taking, States must insist that investors accept the risk and subject themselves to national legislation in a manner similar to the Calvo doctrine, which holds that jurisdiction in international investment disputes must lie with the country in which the investment is made.
“This doctrine has been adopted into the Constitutions of many Latin American States, and merits being used as a model for international investment agreements.”
For decades, investor-State dispute settlement arbitrations have de facto upset the international order, but they cannot trump the Charter of the United Nations. Just as other economic paradigms were abandoned, eventually investor-State dispute settlement will be recognized as an experiment gone wrong, an attempted hijacking of constitutionality resulting in the retrogression of human rights.
Mr De Zayas said it would be appropriate to reaffirm that while free trade and investment agreements have their raison d’etre, the primary role of the State is to act in the public interest.
There are ample opportunities for corporations and investors to make legitimate profits and enter into genuine “partnerships” with States and not into asymmetrical relationships. The rule of thumb should be to: (a) give to corporations what belongs to them – an environment in which to compete fairly; (b) give back to States what is fundamentally and inalienably theirs – sovereignty and policy space; (c) give parliaments what belongs to them – the faculty to consider all aspects of treaties without undemocratic secrecy and fast-tracking; and (d) give to the people what is theirs: the rights to public participation, due process and democracy.
The rights expert called on States, amongst others, to ensure that all trade and investment agreements – existing and future – represent the democratic will of the populations concerned. Negotiations on current drafts must not be secret or “fast-tracked”, but, on the contrary, must be subject to public participation on the basis of independent human rights, health and environmental impact assessments.
States must ensure that all trade and investment agreements recognize the primacy of human rights and specify that, in case of conflict, human rights obligations prevail. States must uphold their erga omnes (towards everyone) obligation to implement human rights treaties and observe ILO and WHO Conventions.
States must ensure that international investment agreements do not undermine their ability to implement the industrial and macroeconomic policies needed for development, which is an essential objective of United Nations ‘constitutional’ law, and take steps to revise promptly existing bilateral investment treaties and free trade agreements with negative effects on human rights.
“States should test existing bilateral investment treaties and free trade agreements for compliance under their respective Constitutions, and revise or terminate said agreements pursuant to the Vienna Convention on the Law of Treaties when they conflict with human rights obligations.”
All future international investment agreements should provide for the settlement of disputes not by investor-State dispute settlement but by the national courts or a special international investment court, explicitly bound by the recognition of the primacy of human rights, public interest and national sovereignty.
States must deny effect to investor-State dispute settlement and ICSID awards that violate human rights, practice solidarity with States seeking to modify or terminate bilateral investment treaties, free trade agreements or investor-State dispute settlement agreements or that deny effect to arbitral awards, and take measures vis-a-vis investors and transnational corporations violating international human rights law.
The rights expert called on UNCTAD (UN Conference on Trade and Development) to consider convening a conference to explore the possibilities of revising or terminating existing bilateral investment treaties and free trade agreements that contain provisions that have interfered with the State’s duty to legislate human rights, implement economic policies and regulate in the public interest.
“Such a conference should advance the UNCTAD ‘action menu’ and ‘road map’ for reform,” Mr De Zayas said.
(See also the two-part article on investment accords by Andrew Cornford of the Observatoire de la Finance in SUNS #8094 dated 17 September 2015 and #8095 dated 18 September 2015.) +
Report on the World Bank and Human Rights by UN Special Rapporteur on extreme poverty and human rights, Philip Alston
Please find attached a report by the UN Special Rapporteur on extreme poverty and human rights, Philip Alston. The report will be presented to the UN General Assembly on 23 October 2015.
The report analyzes the confusing approaches to human rights taken by the World Bank in its legal policy, public relations, policy analysis, operations and safeguards. The Special Rapporteur then seeks to explain why the Bank has historically been averse to acknowledging and taking account of human rights, argues that the Bank needs a new approach and explores what difference that might make.
The report concludes that the existing approach taken by the Bank to human rights is incoherent, counterproductive and unsustainable. For most purposes, the World Bank is a human rights-free zone. In its operational policies, in particular, it treats human rights more like an infectious disease than universal values and obligations.
The biggest single obstacle to moving towards an appropriate approach is the anachronistic and inconsistent interpretation of the “political prohibition” contained in its Articles of Agreement. As a result, the Bank is unable to engage meaningfully with the international human rights framework, or to assist its member countries in complying with their own human rights obligations. That inhibits its ability to take adequate account of the social and political economy aspects of its work within countries and contradicts and undermines the consistent recognition by the international community of the integral relationship between human rights and development. It also prevents the Bank from putting into practice much of its own policy research and analysis, which points to the indispensability of the human rights dimensions of many core development issues.
The report argues that what is needed is a transparent dialogue designed to generate an informed and nuanced policy that will avoid undoubted perils, while enabling the Bank and its members to make constructive and unproductive use of the universally accepted human rights framework. Whether the Bank ultimately maintains, adjusts or changes its existing policy, it is essential that the policy should be principles, compelling and transparent. The recommendations that follow provide some indication as to what a World Bank human rights policy might look like in practice.
Christiaan van Veen
Senior Advisor to the U.N. Special Rapporteur on Extreme Poverty and Human Rights
Center for Human Rights and Global Justice
New York University School of Law
139 MacDougal Street, 5th floor
New York, NY, 10012 USA
Tel.: + 1 (212) 998-6196
DIHR comments on the proposed global priority indicators for the SDGs Human Rights
HUMAN RIGHTS & DEVELOPMENT
JOIN! Days of Action for Justice
Stop the War on the Poor! Time for Justice and System Change!
UNEP REPORT ON OGONI-4 YEARS AFTER
From our colleague in Nigeria:
There are walking corpses in Ogoni – CELESTINE AKPOBARI
”Don’t Let Shell Kill Again”
Dear friends and colleagues, As the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement (TPP) is being rushed to finalization this week, we are pleased to share with you a report on the “Potential human rights impacts of the TPP” by Sanya Reid Smith of Third World Network. She has followed the negotiations closely over the past few years. The 152-page report with extensive references summarises some of the ways in which the TPP can harm human rights. The analysis only examines the impact on recommendations and comments by United Nations (UN) Special Procedures mandate-holders and other UN human rights bodies, and so there are other human rights which are likely to be adversely affected by the TPP which are not covered here. In a statement on the TPP and other free trade agreements, 10 UN Special Rapporteurs/Independent Experts expressed concern about the secret way in which they have been negotiated and their potential adverse impacts on human rights (including the rights to life, food, water and sanitation, health, housing, education, science and culture, improved labour standards, an independent judiciary and a clean environment). The relevant TPP provisions which go beyond the World Trade Organization (WTO) rules are outlined in Annex 1 of the report. Since the TPP governments have refused to release the text, this assessment is based on other publicly available documents. While other WTO, free trade agreement and bilateral investment treaty disputes are unlikely to set precedents for TPP interpretation, they are often likely to be followed, so some of these interpretations have been noted. The full report is available here: http://twn.my/title2/FTAs/
SouthNews: Towards a New Binding Instrument on Human Rights and Transnational Companies
No. 94, 16 July 2015
SOUTHNEWS is a service of the South Centre to provide information and news on topical issues from a South perspective.
Visit the South Centre’s website: www.southcentre.int.
Towards a New Binding Instrument on Human Rights and Transnational Companies
Only 4 more days to Stop Corporate Lawsuits Against Human Rights
Greetings from Asia Pacific forum on Women, Law and Development! Thank you for signing APWLD’s “Stop Corporate Lawsuits Against Human Rights” petition. It is because of your support that the petition is gaining momentum at 312 signatures. Our target is 500 signatures in order to present our petition at The Third Financing for Development Conference. Please join the community of individuals and civil society members who are petitioning to re-instate a clause that would regulate corporate power in the interest of human rights. Some of you have said “Investor State Dispute Settlement seriously weakens governments….huge public funds go to corporations as payouts further creating poverty and inequalities.” Others have commented that ISDS is “anti-democratic…and trade liberalization requirements will exacerbate poverty and undermine local and national sovereignty.” We share your outrage but we need more support! We only have 4 more days to collect these signatures before July 13th. Please continue to support the fight against corporate profit over people by forwarding this e-mail to your networks and friends. You can also post it on social media including Facebook and Twitter In solidarity, Nadia Maki www.apwld.org
TWN Info Service: UN Body to Elaborate Treaty on TNCs/Human Rights Holds First Session
UN body to elaborate treaty on TNCs/human rights holds first session Published in SUNS #8058 dated 8 July2015 Geneva, 7 Jul (Kanaga Raja) — The open-ended intergovernmental working group in charge of elaborating an international legally binding instrument on transnational corporations (TNCs) and other business enterprises with respect to human rights convened its first session here on Monday. The inaugural session of the Working Group (6-10 July) appointed Ambassador Maria Fernanda Espinosa of Ecuador as its Chairperson-Rapporteur. The session opened with a video message from the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights Mr Zeid Ra’ad Al Hussein. It also heard some opening remarks by its keynote speaker, Ms Victoria Tauli-Corpuz, the United Nations Special Rapporteur on the rights of indigenous peoples, who told the delegates that an international legally binding instrument on business and human rights could contribute to redressing gaps and imbalances in the international legal order that undermine human rights, and could help victims of corporate human rights abuse access remedy. (See below.) In a resolution (26/9) adopted at its twenty-sixth session on 26 June 2014, the United Nations Human Rights Council decided to establish “an open-ended intergovernmental working group on transnational corporations and other business enterprises with respect to human rights; whose mandate shall be to elaborate an international legally binding instrument to regulate, in international human rights law, the activities of transnational corporations and other business enterprises.” It also decided that the first two sessions of the open-ended intergovernmental working group shall be dedicated “to conducting constructive deliberations on the content, scope, nature and form of the future international instrument, in this regard.” The Council further decided that the Chairperson-Rapporteur of the working group “should prepare elements for the draft legally binding instrument for substantive negotiations at the commencement of the third session of the working group on the subject, taking into consideration the discussions held at its first two sessions.” The working group will be holding a series of panel discussions on related issues as well as several side events during its week-long first session. According to a Concept Note proposed under the responsibility of the designated Chairperson-Rapporteur, resolution 26/9 stresses that the obligation and primary responsibility to promote and protect human rights and fundamental freedoms lies with the State, and that States must protect against human rights abuse within their territory and/or jurisdiction by third parties, including transnational corporations (TNCs). It noted that while the obligation of States to regulate business activities within their territorial jurisdiction is clear, on the other hand, States’ obligations regarding corporate conduct acting abroad remain unclear. “Member States’ discussions during the process of preparation of the resolution underlined that there are gaps in the international legal framework related to the duty to protect human rights in respect of business activities, and that related instruments are concentrated in soft law.” Furthermore, said the Concept Note, the international legal system reflects an asymmetry between rights and obligations of TNCs. While TNCs are granted rights through hard law instruments, such as bilateral investment treaties and investment rules in free trade agreements, and have access to a system of investor-State dispute settlement, there are no hard law instruments that address the obligations of corporations to respect human rights. Noting that the role of TNCs has exponentially expanded over the last few decades and that value chains are shaped by TNCs that account for around 80 per cent of global trade, the Note said that it is clear that the role of corporations has evolved in a way that transcends national laws. Yet, TNCs still lack international legal responsibility commensurate with their role and influence in international and domestic affairs. While it is important to strengthen national legal frameworks and mechanisms for access to remedy in cases of human rights violations, there is an increasing need for international cooperation between States to ensure that victims of corporate human rights abuse have access to remedy, it said. OPENING REMARKS BY KEYNOTE SPEAKER In her opening remarks at the first session, the United Nations Special Rapporteur on the rights of indigenous peoples Ms Victoria Tauli-Corpuz noted that indigenous peoples have been at the forefront of discussions regarding the human rights abuses committed by corporations since the 1970s. For decades, indigenous peoples have been victims of corporate activities in or near their traditional territories, which have depleted and polluted their traditional territories without their consent, putting many peoples at the verge of cultural or physical extinction. “Today, little has changed in relation to this situation,” she said, pointing out that indigenous peoples and other local communities continue to suffer disproportionately the negative impact of corporate activities, while community leaders and activists suffer a true escalation of violence at the hands of government forces and private security companies. “Many of the displacements of indigenous peoples from their ancestral territories and the extrajudicial killings of indigenous activists usually happen in communities where there are ongoing struggles against corporations.” The Special Rapporteur recalled her predecessor in the mandate, Professor James Anaya, as concluding that extractive and other large-scale corporate activities constitute today “one of the most important sources of abuse of the rights of indigenous peoples’ in virtually all parts of the world.” The adoption by the Human Rights Council of resolution 26/9, establishing this Working Group, represents a significant development, said Ms Tauli-Corpuz. The United Nations responded to calls from around the world, including the persistent appeals of indigenous peoples, to strengthen the architecture of international human rights law in order to adapt further to the challenges posed by corporate-related human rights abuses. “While the global economic trends are increasingly characterized by dominance of corporations, their role extends beyond the capacities of any one national system to effectively regulate their operations. The issues at stake are global, and so should be the response.” Too often those whose human rights are affected by the operations of businesses (for too long considered the externalities of business activity) are left without any real access to effective remedies, and often States themselves are without the requisite tools to hold corporations’ accountability where needed. According to the Special Rapporteur, this is a matter which concerns her the most because the weaknesses of States, corporations and the United Nations in providing effective remedies creates desperation and hopelessness, which provide a fertile ground for the operations of criminal transnational syndicates. “An international legally binding instrument on business and human rights could contribute to redressing gaps and imbalances in the international legal order that undermine human rights, and could help victims of corporate human rights abuse access remedy.” The rights expert acknowledged that some progress has been achieved in the area of human rights and business in recent years. Notably, the adoption by the Human Rights Council in 2011 of the UN Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights marked a significant step forward, particularly by clarifying many elements of the State’s duty to protect human rights from business-related human rights violations, and acknowledging also that businesses themselves have responsibilities to respect human rights. The rights expert underlined that the search for a new international legal instrument and the implementation of the Guiding Principles should not be seen as contradictory, but rather complementary objectives. She said that the mandate established by resolution 26/9 is highly relevant and necessary. Corporations are key actors in shaping and influencing economic, as well as political, social and cultural issues, activities and frameworks all over the world, including production and consumption patterns and livelihoods of communities. While global economic trends are increasingly characterized by the dominance of corporations, their role extends beyond the capacities of any one national system to effectively regulate their operations. As foreign investors, corporations are benefiting from an international protection regime that is consolidated through rules under bilateral investment treaties and/or free trade agreements and other regional arrangements. This system is enabled through an investor-State dispute settlement mechanism and far-reaching rules for recognition and enforcement of arbitral awards. According to the Special Rapporteur, reform of the international investment protection regime, including the substance of the treaties and the investor-State dispute settlement mechanism, is emerging as an issue of concern for both developing and developed countries. “What we see more and more is that foreign investors and transnational corporations are provided with very strong rights and extremely strong enforcement mechanisms. On the other hand, global and national rules dealing with the responsibilities of corporations and other forms of businesses are characterized by the form of soft law.” They fall short of legally binding instruments that allow for achieving balance in the rights and responsibilities of these actors. The rights expert said: “We face a context where corporations still lack international legal responsibility commensurate with their role and influence in international and domestic affairs. At the same time, there are gaps in the international legal framework in regard to the duty to protect human rights and access to remedy.” An international legally binding Instrument would significantly help in establishing the much needed balance in the international system of rights and obligations with regard to corporations and host governments, she added. Resolution 26/9 takes us one step further along the pathway toward strengthening the system of human rights law, and this opportunity for the Intergovernmental Working Group must be seized upon to address two urgent global realities – the first being access to remedies and the second relating to the need to uphold the primacy of human rights in the context of business activities. At the present time, said the rights expert, the ability for communities and people affected by corporate human rights violations to access remedies is very weak and such remedies do not even cut across all jurisdictions. At the same time, in many cases corporate human rights violations touch upon the interests of more than one country’s jurisdiction. “In this sense, for the Intergovernmental Working Group to make real advances in providing access to effective remedies, the future legal instrument must clarify the extraterritorial obligations of states to ensure access to effective remedies within all states that are connected to the corporations in question.” Fortunately, the Maastricht Principles on Extraterritorial Obligations of States in the Area of Economic, Social and Cultural Rights go a long way to clarifying the application of law in this context, and will provide a powerful resource for the Intergovernmental Working Group to call upon for guidance. Ms Tauli-Corpuz said that a second key opportunity for the Intergovernmental Working Group concerns the possibility for a new international instrument, within the context of business activities, to reinforce the fundamental principle of international law which recognizes the primacy of human rights above all other systems of law. As recognized by the Committee on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights in its 1998 Statement on Globalisation “the realms of trade, finance and investment are in no way exempt from these general [human rights] principles”. The global reality for many communities, as well as States from all parts of the world, is that corporations today have the ability under international trade and investment law to sue States when they pass laws that aim to improve human rights and environmental protections. In this context, said the rights expert, the international community is failing to realise the guarantees of the international human rights regime. The work of the Intergovernmental Working Group can also benefit corporations by producing a level playing field for investment across all States. In this sense, the Working Group has the opportunity to develop standards for all States that codify within international law the regulatory advances being made within some jurisdictions on a piecemeal basis. “Providing this type of regulatory clarity and certainty, within international human rights law, provides a uniform approach which will benefit all corporations.” This advance would also undermine the practice of some corporations to seek out investment jurisdictions with weak regulatory environments, thereby creating negative incentives for other corporations to do likewise, resulting in what some refer to as the race to the bottom. “Similarly, for States, this advance in international law would also undermine the ability of their counterpart States weakening their regulations, at the same time exposing their populations to human rights violations, in the process of attracting investment.” The Special Rapporteur underlined that any discussion on an international legal instrument regulating the responsibility of corporate actors in relation to human rights should not divert the attention of the important responsibilities that pertain to States in fulfilling their obligation to protect their own citizens against corporate activities. Unfortunately, more often than ever, States are silent witnesses or victims of corporate abuse, but they are all also, either by action or by omission, responsible to a certain extent in these abuses. The line that separates corporate interest from State policy is sometimes blurred. The rights expert said that an international legally binding instrument would go some way to establish balance in the international system of rights and obligations with regard to corporations and host governments. It would benefit States in their human rights obligations in relation to corporate activities. Businesses that already respect human rights and are engaged in best practice development would also benefit and have a clear interest in supporting and helping develop this instrument, she added. In this connection, the Special Rapporteur expressed hope that the discussions in this forum will also contribute to make concrete progress in this regard. She reminded the audience that “we should not lose sight of the ultimate objective of this exercise, which should not be other than strengthening the protection of human rights against abuses committed in the context of corporate activities. For indigenous peoples, as well as for many other human communities of this world, the issues at stake are just too high.” + SRRIPs FINAL Opening Statement at IWGBHR
Lula: Freedom of Association and the Right to Strike
Dear friends, We are honoured to publish this week an article by the former President of the Federal Republic of Brazil, Luis Inacio Lula da Silva (“Lula”), on ‘Freedom of Association and the Right to Strike’. In the context of the International Labour Conference (held in Geneva at the moment), he takes issue with attempts at limiting the right to strike by suggesting it is not covered by Convention 87 of the ILO on freedom of association, as well as with pressures to reduce the ILO’s character from an international (tripartite) organisation to a UN agency. As Lula puts it, rather than a fair reflection of ‘new realities’, this push reflects “an attempt to weaken a fundamental ILO standard, namely freedom of association, and hence the other ones too”. Recalling how international solidarity using this Convention helped him and other unionists when they were imprisoned for leading a metalworkers’ strike in 1980, he reminds us that “throughout history, higher, more justly distributed incomes and the promotion of social rights have never been won without workers’ organizing in unions and holding strikes”. Please find the article attached to this email and on our Global Labor Column: http://column.global-labour-
The U.N. Charter was signed in San Francisco on June 26, 1945 FOR PEACE?
SALUD. LET US MAKE SURE THIS INSTRUMENT for PEACE, THE UN .. WALKS ITS TALK.. IN ALL WAYS, ALWAYS for the good of planet, our Pachamama, and humanity.
Invitación a participar de Consulta Regional de Rumbo a Tercera Conferencia Internacional de Financiación para el Desarrollo (FpD3)
ck our work at web sites..***web del MUSEO AJA LINK: http://www.museoaja.org
UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon Speaks in SF as U.S. Supreme Court affirms:“Same –Sex Marriage is a Right”,
I had registered to attend this event awhile ago–
and what a historic moment as all of us gathered on this historic day at SF City Hall to hear UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon speak along with other dignitaries (Congresswoman Nancy Pelosi, Gov. Jerry Brown & SF Mayor Ed Lee) on the occasion of commemorating the 70th anniversary of the signing of the UN Charter.And of course the electric excitement was in the air as the Supreme Court Decision “Same-Sex Marriage is a Right” reverberated throughout the hall– where in 2004, Mayor Gavin Newsom gained national attention when he directed the San Francisco city–county clerk to issue marriage licenses in this very building.
Across the hall from me up on the top balcony was Malala Yousafzai, Nobel Peace Prize winner from Pakistan. ( I do miss working at the U.N. with other NGO’s).
SAN FRANCISCO (KGO) — U.N. Secretary General Ban Ki Moon is in San Francisco to commemorate the 70th anniversary of the signing of the United Nations Charter. He spoke exclusively with ABC7 News Anchor Cheryl Jennings before attending a series of events. “I whole-heartedly welcome this historic decision. This is a great step forward for human rights in the United States,” Moon told Jennings. The U.N. Charter was signed in San Francisco on June 26, 1945 at Veteran’s Memorial Hall. The charter took effect in October of that year. Moon has a deep connection to the Bay Area. He was an exchange student with the Red Cross, coming from war-torn Korea and stayed with a family in Novato. Seventy years ago, representatives from 50 war-weary countries gathered in San Francisco to create an international organization aimed at saving future generations from the “scourge of war:” the United Nations. Mary Rose KaczorowskiConnect with me on: http://www.linkedin.com/
in/mrk2008 firstname.lastname@example.org @mrk46
" We are called to assist the Earth to heal her wounds and in the process heal our own - indeed to embrace the whole of creation in all its diversity, beauty and wonder. Recognizing that sustainable development, democracy and peace are indivisible is an idea whose time has come."-- Dr. Wangari Muta Maathai, 1 April 1940 - 25 September 2011
Special event on the occasion of the International Day of Non-Violence – 2 Oct ’14
UN SR Extreme Poverty Report to UN HR Council 2015 – Gender-Based Discrimination & Economic Inequalities
WUNRN LISTSERVE <email@example.com> Date: Thu, Jun 18, 2015 Subject: [WUNRN] UN SR Extreme Poverty Report to UN HR Council 2015 – Gender-Based Discrimination & Economic Inequalities To: WUNRN ListServe <firstname.lastname@example.org.
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27 May 2015 Original: English Human Rights Council Twenty-ninth session Promotion and protection of all human rights, civil, political, economic, social and cultural rights, including the right to development
Report of the Special Rapporteur on extreme poverty and human rights, Philip Alston*
In the present report, the Special Rapporteur on extreme poverty and human rights focuses on the relationship between extreme poverty and extreme inequality and argues that a human rights framework is critical in addressing extreme inequality. In the report, the Special Rapporteur provides an overview of the widening economic and social inequalities around the world; illustrates how such inequalities stifle equal opportunity, lead to laws, regulations and institutions that favour the powerful, and perpetuate discrimination against certain groups, such as women; and further discusses the negative effects of economic inequalities on a range of civil, political, economic, social and cultural rights. The Special Rapporteur also analyses the response of the international community, including the United Nations, the World Bank and the International Monetary Fund, to the challenge of extreme inequality, finding that human rights are absent in the inequality debate and little has been done to follow up on any of the studies or recommendations emerging from the United Nations human rights system. To conclude, the Special Rapporteur proposes an agenda for the future for tackling inequality, including: committing to reduce extreme inequality; giving economic, social and cultural rights the same prominence and priority as are given to civil and political rights; recognizing the right to social protection; implementing fiscal policies specifically aimed at reducing inequality; revitalizing and giving substance to the right to equality; and putting questions of resource redistribution at the centre of human rights debates.
25. Although many forms of discrimination are inherently unjust, the correlation between gender-based discrimination and economic inequalities deserves special mention since it potentially affects half of the world’s population. While both men and women may experience myriad inequalities, based on factors such as their race, ethnicity, sexual orientation or disability, gender-based discrimination is too often seen to be almost exclusively a women’s problem. In its World Development Report 2012, the World Bank describes the forms of discrimination that still exist in many countries and that directly affect economic inequality between men and women. According to the World Bank, men and women still have different ownership rights in at least nine countries, and in many countries, women and girls still have fewer inheritance rights than men and boys. In addition, women continue to fare badly in the labour market generally. A stocktaking by the United Nations Entity for Gender Equality and the Empowerment of Women (UN-Women) shows that almost 80 countries maintain restrictions on the types of work that women are permitted to undertake. Also according to UN-Women, at the global level, women’s labour force participation rates have stagnated since the 1990s. Currently, only half of women are in the labour force compared to more than three quarters of men. Despite considerable regional variations, nowhere has this gender gap been eliminated: globally, women earn on average 24 per cent less than men. In one study of four countries, lifetime income gaps between women and men were estimated to be between 31 and 75 per cent.
* Late submission.
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“Universal Rights, Differentiated Responsibilities: Safeguarding human rights beyond borders to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals”
As we enter into the most intensive period of the FfD negotiations, you may be interested in this new briefing from CESR and TWN, which argues that human rights obligations can provide a fresh lens on one of the most entrenched stalemates in the negotiations: the respective responsibilities of governments North and South to achieve and to finance sustainable development.
We hope it can be a useful tool in showing how existing international law affirms that states have certain human rights duties which extend outside of their own territory. Though rarely invoked in post-2015 debates, these extraterritorial human rights obligations can provide normative grounding for the commitment to ‘policy coherence’ under the SDG goal on the global partnership for sustainable development, while buttressing the principle of Common But Differentiated Responsibilities. Feel free to disseminate broadly.
|Click here to download the briefing in pdf format|
“Universal Rights, Differentiated Responsibilities: Safeguarding human rights beyond borders to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals” sets out how human rights provide a normative framework that can help delineate the duties states have to cooperate with each other in the achievement of sustainable development commitments. In particular, the obligations of states to respect, protect and fulfil human rights extraterritorially as well as domestically offer a clear set of common standards to assess whether governments are upholding their common but differentiated responsibilities relating to sustainable development, including those of wealthier countries regarding SDG financing and means of implementation. In an interconnected and interdependent world with vast disparities in power, capacity and means, states exert significant influence on sustainable development beyond their borders in a plethora of ways—be they through the cross-border spillover effects of national policy decisions, via their bilateral and multilateral policies on tax, trade, investment and finance, through their capacity to regulate multinational corporations over whom they have jurisdiction, or as voting member states in international financial institutions. The experience of the last fifteen years has shown how profoundly these factors limit the capacity of other national governments to realize their human rights and development commitments. International law—anchored in the UN Charter and various international human rights treaties and jurisprudence—affirms that states have certain human rights duties which extend outside of their own territory. Though rarely invoked in post-2015 debates, extraterritorial human rights obligations can shed useful light on current discussions around international cooperation and financing. They provide normative grounding for the commitment to ‘policy coherence’ under the SDG goal on the global partnership for sustainable development, while buttressing the principle of Common But Differentiated Responsibilities (CBDR), reaffirmed since the 1992 Rio Declaration on Environment and Development, but whose scope has been hotly contested by some states in the context of the post-2015 and FfD negotiations. CESR and TWN’s joint briefing elucidates the legal sources for these extraterritorial obligations, their policy relevance for the post-2015 and FFD processes, and illustrates various good practices of governments in examining and addressing their impacts on human rights and sustainable development beyond their borders. It also proposes ten concrete ways in which states should align their sustainable development and financing commitments with these existing international duties. These include:
- Conducting sustainable development impact assessments of tax, trade and investment policies
- Ensuring mandatory human rights reporting by large businesses
- Establishing ex ante eligibility criteria for private sector partnerships
- Regulating financial markets more effectively
- Fulfilling development assistance commitments
- Diversifying public financing measures
- Establishing a debt workout mechanism
- Monitoring extraterritorial impacts as part of post-2015 and FfD review processes
- Promoting equitable and meaningful participation in the global partnership for sustainable development
- Ensuring transparent global governance
This timely contribution to the post-2015 and FfD negotiations is relevant to government negotiators and advocates seeking to break through the stale geo-political deadlock at the UN, and to bring to bear a more holistic and globally balanced perspective on human rights in the definition, implementation, financing and monitoring of these new sustainable development commitments.
- To learn more about CESR’s work on the Sustainable Development Goals, click here.
- To learn more about CESR’s work on tax justice and human rights, click here.
- For media contacts and to arrange interviews, contact Luke Holland at email@example.com
TWN Info Service: Shaping the treaty on business and human rights views from Asia and the Pacific
Title : TWN Info Service: Shaping the treaty on business and human rights – views from Asia and the Pacific Date : 11 May 2015
Contents: Dear friends and colleagues, We are pleased to share with you a posting by the Asia Pacific Forum on Women, Law and Development (APWLD) on the regional civil society consultation held on 1-3 May 2015 in Chiang Mai with regard to the process underway at the UN Human Rights Council to develop a binding instrument “to regulate, in international human rights law, the activities of transnational corporations and other business enterprises”. This was the first of three Regional Consultations with civil society. The Intergovernmental Working Group established under the Resolution will meet for the first time in July to begin its work of defining the content and form of the treaty. With best wishes, Third World Network
Shaping the treaty on business and human rights: views from Asia and the Pacific In Bougainville, Papua New Guinea, the catastrophic environmental damage and social upheaval caused by the Panguna copper mine sparked a decade-long civil that claimed thousands of lives, unleashed waves of gender-based violence, and tore apart the social fabric of the island. Talks are now underway to re-open (www.theaustralian.com.au/
UN Experts Say TPP and Fast Track Threaten Human Rights
UN Experts Say TPP and Fast Track Threaten Human Rights
Last week, an independent UN expert on the promotion of a democratic and equitable international order, Alfred de Zayas, said that thesecrecy surrounding trade negotiations is a threat to human rights because it disenfranchises and excludes the public from “the right and opportunity to take part in the conduct of public affairs.” He urges human rights impact assessments be undertaken immediately as part of the negotiation process, and goes on to say that fast tracking these deals to approval has a detrimental impact on a democratic, equitable world order.
We agree, and have been fighting Fast Track legislation in the U.S. to stop back-room negotiations that led to the TPP’s provisions become legitimized by the bill’s passage.
In his statements, he particularly singles out trade agreements’ investor-state dispute settlement (ISDS) provisions.
-- Maira Sutton Global Policy Analyst Electronic Frontier Foundation - www.eff.org firstname.lastname@example.org Tel: 415.436.9333 x175 :: Defending Your Rights in the Digital World :: Public key: https://www.eff.org/files/
2014/02/10/mairakey_0.txt Fingerprint: 2F7D A3AE 708F 9560 C651 9FE6 3806 1A6A 2F37 ACED Learn how to encrypt your email with the Email Self Defense guide: https://emailselfdefense.fsf. org/en
MARTA – CK : IMPORTANT INFO : [GlobalG8-G20] Investor vs Human Rights: Remember the MAI?
SALUDOS.. PLS SEE IMPORTANT INFO.. SHARE..MARTA
——————————————————————————————- . No more Mary Janes: Justice for all migrant workers! This statement can also be found at: http://aprnet.org/?p=267 APRN Statement on the latest developments on Mary Jane Velosoâ€™s case 1 May 2015 â€˜Collective action can indeed move mountains, serve justice for the marginalized.â€™ As we celebrate the International Workersâ€™ Day, the Asia Pacific Research Network join CSOs and peopleâ€™s movements around the world in rejoicing over the Indonesian governmentâ€™s decision to delay the execution of Mary Jane Veloso, a 30-year old migrant worker convicted of smuggling drugs to Indonesia. This is a leap towards delivering justice to her case. APRN lauds the untiring advocacy of the activists and peoples movements in the Philippines, Indonesia, Hong Kong and various other countries to save Mary Janeâ€™s life. We are grateful and inspired by the outpour of international solidarity extended by people from all walks of life from all over the world, who did not give up even when it seems there was no more hope. We are Mary Jane Mary Jane Veloso is the daughter of sugarcane workers in Hacienda Luisita, a plantation in the Philippines owned by the Presidentâ€™s family. Having been raised in a poor, peasant family, Mary Jane married at the age of 17. To provide for her two sons, she was forced to work as a domestic helper in Dubai in 2009, where she stayed only for 10 months. She returned to the Philippines after her own employer attempted to rape her. After months of not being able to find employment in the Philippines, a family friend took Mary Jane with her to Malaysia under the promise of employment as a domestic worker, only to be told upon arrival that the job was not available. Mary Janeâ€™s recruiter then sent her to a 7-day holiday to Indonesia. She discovered that she was tricked into bringing 2.6 kilograms of heroin when the Yogyakarta airport found the drugs sewn into the lining of her luggage that was bought for her. Mary Jane was convicted of drug smuggling in that same year and was sentenced death by firing squad. Like others coming from poor families in developing countries, Mary Jane is a victim of the unjust development paradigm that breeds structural inequality and enriches a few at the expense of the larger portion of society. Like other women migrant workers, she is a victim of the neoliberal economic model that systematically disposes marginalized communities and families, turning them into cheap, disposable labor, and pushing them out of their own countries to find means of survival away from their loved ones. In Mary Janeâ€™s case, her familyâ€™s landlessness and the lack of jobs in the Philippines forced her into migration. Like other Filipino migrant workers, she is a victim of the countryâ€™s labor export policy, which systematically disposes people to work as domestic helpers, or skilled laborers, whose billions of remittances keep the Philippine economy afloat. Integration for Whom? What does the future hold for migrant workers like Mary Jane in an integrated ASEAN? The ASEAN Economic Community blueprint for integration is a recipe for heightened trade liberalization and increase of corporate power, which can destroy local economies and peopleâ€™s sovereignty over their countryâ€™s resources. With the proposed free flow of goods, labor, capital and investments, corporations can easily replace local labor with cheap foreign goods and/or move their operations to other countries with lower wages, weaker labor laws and less strict environmental regulations. This can depress wages, cause job losses and fuel forced migration among workers especially in developing ASEAN countries. Low-skilled migrant workers can face discrimination and abuse in a country where there is a growing need for skilled workers. In the bid to attract more TNC investments, ASEAN member states are giving corporations stronger protection such as stronger intellectual property rights, investment defense forces, and the investor-state dispute settlement, which gives corporations the right to sue governments if their profits are in danger because of certain legislation even if they uphold peopleâ€™s rights and welfare. This can spell grave consequences for labor rights and the peopleâ€™s welfare in general. For example, French company Veola sued Egypt for increasing the countryâ€™s minimum wage. The Fight Continues The global push to save Mary Jane earned her a temporary lease on life. The new challenge for CSOs and peoples movements is to ultimately acquit Veloso and serve justice not only for her but also for other victims of human trafficking and illegal recruitment. The bigger challenge is to push for Development Justice to do away with the current model of economic development and integration which do not respect the peopleâ€™s sovereignty and human rights.Â Development Justice is a transformative framework for development that aims to reduce inequalities of wealth, power, and resources between countries, between rich and poor, and between men and women. The International Workersâ€™ Day reminds us that the indeed, collective struggle can bring positive, tangible change for the people and that the victories that were gained for workers all over the world need to protected from the neoliberal onslaught. Together with peopleâ€™s movements and CSOs across Asia and the Pacific, APRN calls to: -Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Abolish labor export policies -Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Respect human rights and protect migrant workers and their families -Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Push for economic development that will benefit the people instead of corporations -Â Â Â Â Â Â Development Justice now!
——————————————————————————————————– . Video of statement on Trade Agreements Dear friends, Sharing with you the video of a short statement made by Tessa Kahn of APWLD on trade agreements during last week’s post-2015 negotiation session on behalf of APWLD, the Women’s Major Group, and the Women’s Working Group on Financing for Development. https://www.youtube.com/watch?
Forthcoming Young Leaders Forums for 2015
Ruud Lubbers, Former Prime Minister of the Netherlands
Recommend the Integration of the Elimination of Racism in the Framework of the UN SDGs Agenda – A Position Paper
10km3x2. GEOCODED spatial transparent metric
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National Action Network
Rev. Charles White
Migrant Domestic Workers and SDGs
Dr. Maya Angelou – I Am Human
Facing Evil With Dr. Maya Angelou
Urgent Appeal for Action: Stop political vilification and harassment of HR and IP Rights Defenders in Ifugao, Cordillera, Philippines
March 19, 2015Urgent Appeal for Action: Stop political vilification and harassment of human rights and indigenous peoples’ rights defenders in Ifugao, Cordillera, Philippines
Dear friends, We are appealing for your support to raise concern and denounce the heightened incidents of political vilification, surveillance and harassment against members and leaders of the Ifugao Peasant Movement (IPM), barangay[i] officials, local organizations and indigenous people’s rights advocates. As peace loving citizens, we firmly believe that political vilification is an outright violation of the basic rights of individuals to freely express their political beliefs and to join organizations advancing people’s and sectoral rights. Moreover, political vilification is a real threat to the lives and security of the people subjected to it. We are alarmed and convinced that the intensity of threats and political vilification are serious warnings of actual arrest, detention and even graver forms of human rights violations. The Philippine government’s counter-insurgency policy called Oplan Bayanihan deliberately associates human rights defenders, activists and civilians as members or supporters of the revolutionary armed group New Peoples Army (NPA) to condition the public that they are “enemies of the State” or “terrorists” and thus serves as a prelude or justification to illegal arrests based on trumped up charges or even extrajudicial killings and enforced disappearance. Serious concern has to be raised against this. · Starting from the last quarter of 2014 up to the present, several political vilification materials were posted on social media groups, such as Facebook, in Ifugao province labeling the staff of IPM, barangay officials and members of local people’s organizations and advocates of indigenous peoples rights as members of the NPA. Among the IPM members and staff tagged as members of NPA are: Nestor Peralta, Claudine Panayo, Billy Karty, Ben Calingayan, and Brandon Lee. Active barangay officials and local members of people’s organizations are also vilified, including Edwin Bumolyad, barangay captain of Montabiong, Lagawe, Ifugao; Nonoy Bangtiwen, a member of the barangay council of Tulludan, Tinoc; and Dick Tangid, a member of the barangay council of Tupaya, Lagawe and the current vice chair of IPM; Ricardo Mayumi and several others. Engr. James Tayaban, a human rights defender, is also included in the vilification materials. The materials also lump almost all party lists, peoples organizations and non-government organizations working and serving the province of Ifugao as communist fronts. Among the listed organizations are: Bayan Muna, Anakpawis, Alliance of Concerned Teachers, Cordillera People’s Alliance, Center for Development Programs in the Cordillera, Montanosa Research and Development Center, Amianan Salakniban, Katinnulong Dagiti Umili iti Amianan, Tebtebba, Igorota Foundation and more. · This is not the first time that intense surveillance, harassment and political vilification happened in Ifugao targeting activists and development workers. In October 2012, the 86th IBPA based in Tinoc, Ifugao released a copy of their so-called “Target List”. This document listed 28 individuals – development workers, activists and government employees. William Bugatti was then no. 21 in the list. He was extrajudicially killed on March 25, 2014. On 26 February 2014, posters with the heading “Rupa Ken Nagan ti NPA nga Agsusuweldo” (Faces and Names of the New People’s Army Receiving Salaries) were posted by State security forces and their agents in the market and waiting sheds of various municipalities/towns in Ifugao province. These posters unjustly tagged some of the staff of the Cordillera People’s Alliance and party lists as enemies of the state. The labeling and tagging of these organizations and individuals are malicious, baseless and unfounded. It is unjust that those who bring services to far-flung communities of farmers and indigenous peoples are vilified and their lives threatened. Activists, development workers, non-government organizations and people’s organizations assist in providing the much needed social services and livelihood assistance to local communities and sectors suffering from severe poverty and government neglect. It is condemnable that human rights workers are being silenced by the State whose mandate is to uphold and defend human rights. Recommended Actions: Please send letters of concern, emails or fax messages calling for: 1. An independent investigation of the surveillance, threats and harassment against human rights workers and activists in the Cordillera region, particularly in Ifugao province. 2. An end to political vilification of people’s organizations, activists, development workers, and human rights defenders maliciously tagged as “enemies of the State” or “terrorists” in the Cordillera region and the Philippines. 3. The Aquino administration to withdraw its counter-insurgency program Oplan Bayanihan which targets innocent and unarmed civilians and activists. 4. The resumption of peace negotiations between the Republic of the Philippines and the National Democratic Front as a means to achieve just and lasting peace. 5. The Aquino administration to implement and uphold the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, the UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples (UNDRIP), and various human rights treaties and instruments that the Philippine government is a party or signatory of. Please send your communications to: H.E. Benigno C. Aquino III President of the Republic Malacañang Palace, JP Laurel St., San Miguel Manila Philippines Voice: (+632) 564 1451 to 80 Fax: (+632) 742-1641 / 929-3968 E-mail: email@example.com Sec. Teresita Quintos-Deles Presidential Adviser on the Peace Process Office of the Presidential Adviser on the Peace Process (OPAPP) 7th Floor Agustin Building I Emerald Avenue Pasig City 1605 Voice:+63 (2) 636 0701 to 066 Fax:+63 (2) 638 2216 firstname.lastname@example.org Ret. Lt. Gen. Voltaire T. Gazmin Secretary, Department of National Defense Room 301 DND Building, Camp Emilio Aguinaldo, E. de los Santos Avenue, Quezon City Voice:+63(2) 911-6193 / 911-0488 / 982-5600 Fax:+63(2) 982-5600 Email: email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org Atty. Leila De Lima Secretary, Department of Justice Padre Faura St., Manila Direct Line 521-1908 Trunkline 523-84-81 loc.211/214 Fax: (+632) 523-9548 Email: email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com Hon. Loretta Ann P. Rosales Chairperson, Commission on Human Rights SAAC Bldg., UP Complex Commonwealth Avenue Diliman, Quezon City, Philippines Voice: (+632) 928-5655, 926-6188 Fax: (+632) 929 0102 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com Hon. Denis Habawel Governor, Province of Ifugao Capitol Plaza, Lagawe, Ifugao, Philippines Email: firstname.lastname@example.org Hon. Teodoro Baguilat Congressman Ifugao Lone District Representative Rm. N-315, North Wing, Constitution Hills 1126 Quezon City, Philippines Telefax : (+632) 931 5106 Email : email@example.com Rep. Guillermo Romarate Jr. Chair Committee on Human Rights House of Representatives 3/F Ramon V. Mitra Buillding, House of Representatives, Quezon City Telephone no. 9315001 local 7157, Telefax: 9324803 Rep. Nancy Catamco Chair National Cultural Communities Committee House of Representatives 3/F Annex Building, House of Representatives, Quezon City Telephone no. 932-3909
This APPEAL FOR IMMEDIATE ACTION is prepared by the CORDILLERA PEOPLES ALLIANCE. Please send a copy of your email/mail/fax to the above-named government officials to our address below: Cordillera Peoples Alliance Postal Address: 3F 55 Ferguson Road, Baguio City 2600, Philippines Telephone No. +6374 4229754 Fax No. +6374 4437159 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org Webpage: www.cpaphils.org Facebook: Cordillera Peoples Alliance Cordillera Human Rights Alliance 2F 55 Ferguson Road Baguio City 2600 E-mail: email@example.com Urgent Alert- Stop political vilification and harassment of HR and IP rights defenders in Ifugao, Cordillera, Philippines . .
Urgent Appeal for Action: Stop political vilification and harassment of HR and IP Rights Defenders in Ifugao, Cordillera, Philippines
March 19, 2015 Urgent Appeal for Action:
Stop political vilification and harassment of human rights and
indigenous peoples’ rights defenders in Ifugao, Cordillera, Philippines
Dear friends, We are appealing for your support to raise concern and denounce the heightened incidents of political vilification, surveillance and harassment against members and leaders of the Ifugao Peasant Movement (IPM), barangay[i] officials, local organizations and indigenous people’s rights advocates. As peace loving citizens, we firmly believe that political vilification is an outright violation of the basic rights of individuals to freely express their political beliefs and to join organizations advancing people’s and sectoral rights. Moreover, political vilification is a real threat to the lives and security of the people subjected to it. We are alarmed and convinced that the intensity of threats and political vilification are serious warnings of actual arrest, detention and even graver forms of human rights violations. The Philippine government’s counter-insurgency policy called Oplan Bayanihan deliberately associates human rights defenders, activists and civilians as members or supporters of the revolutionary armed group New Peoples Army (NPA) to condition the public that they are “enemies of the State” or “terrorists” and thus serves as a prelude or justification to illegal arrests based on trumped up charges or even extrajudicial killings and enforced disappearance. Serious concern has to be raised against this.
- Starting from the last quarter of 2014 up to the present, several political vilification materials were posted on social media groups, such as Facebook, in Ifugao province labeling the staff of IPM, barangay officials and members of local people’s organizations and advocates of indigenous peoples rights as members of the NPA.
Among the IPM members and staff tagged as members of NPA are: Nestor Peralta, Claudine Panayo, Billy Karty, Ben Calingayan, and Brandon Lee. Active barangay officials and local members of people’s organizations are also vilified, including Edwin Bumolyad, barangay captain of Montabiong, Lagawe, Ifugao; Nonoy Bangtiwen, a member of the barangay council of Tulludan, Tinoc; and Dick Tangid, a member of the barangay council of Tupaya, Lagawe and the current vice chair of IPM; Ricardo Mayumi and several others. Engr. James Tayaban, a human rights defender, is also included in the vilification materials. The materials also lump almost all party lists, peoples organizations and non-government organizations working and serving the province of Ifugao as communist fronts. Among the listed organizations are: Bayan Muna, Anakpawis, Alliance of Concerned Teachers, Cordillera People’s Alliance, Center for Development Programs in the Cordillera, Montanosa Research and Development Center, Amianan Salakniban, Katinnulong Dagiti Umili iti Amianan, Tebtebba, Igorota Foundation and more.
- This is not the first time that intense surveillance, harassment and political vilification happened in Ifugao targeting activists and development workers. In October 2012, the 86th IBPA based in Tinoc, Ifugao released a copy of their so-called “Target List”. This document listed 28 individuals – development workers, activists and government employees. William Bugatti was then no. 21 in the list. He was extrajudicially killed on March 25, 2014.
On 26 February 2014, posters with the heading “Rupa Ken Nagan ti NPA nga Agsusuweldo” (Faces and Names of the New People’s Army Receiving Salaries) were posted by State security forces and their agents in the market and waiting sheds of various municipalities/towns in Ifugao province. These posters unjustly tagged some of the staff of the Cordillera People’s Alliance and party lists as enemies of the state. The labeling and tagging of these organizations and individuals are malicious, baseless and unfounded. It is unjust that those who bring services to far-flung communities of farmers and indigenous peoples are vilified and their lives threatened. Activists, development workers, non-government organizations and people’s organizations assist in providing the much needed social services and livelihood assistance to local communities and sectors suffering from severe poverty and government neglect. It is condemnable that human rights workers are being silenced by the State whose mandate is to uphold and defend human rights. Recommended Actions: Please send letters of concern, emails or fax messages calling for: 1. An independent investigation of the surveillance, threats and harassment against human rights workers and activists in the Cordillera region, particularly in Ifugao province. 2. An end to political vilification of people’s organizations, activists, development workers, and human rights defenders maliciously tagged as “enemies of the State” or “terrorists” in the Cordillera region and the Philippines. 3. The Aquino administration to withdraw its counter-insurgency program Oplan Bayanihan which targets innocent and unarmed civilians and activists. 4. The resumption of peace negotiations between the Republic of the Philippines and the National Democratic Front as a means to achieve just and lasting peace. 5. The Aquino administration to implement and uphold the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, the UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples (UNDRIP), and various human rights treaties and instruments that the Philippine government is a party or signatory of,. Please send your communications to: H.E. Benigno C. Aquino III President of the Republic MalacañangPalace, JP Laurel St., San Miguel Manila Philippines Voice: (+632) 564 1451 to 80 Fax: (+632) 742-1641 / 929-3968 E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org Sec. Teresita Quintos-Deles Presidential Adviser on the Peace Process Office of the Presidential Adviser on the Peace Process (OPAPP) 7th FloorAgustinBuilding I Emerald Avenue PasigCity 1605 Voice:+63 (2) 636 0701 to 066 Fax:+63 (2) 638 2216 email@example.com Ret. Lt. Gen. Voltaire T. Gazmin Secretary, Department of National Defense Room 301 DNDBuilding, CampEmilio Aguinaldo, E. de los Santos Avenue, Quezon City Voice:+63(2) 911-6193 / 911-0488 / 982-5600 Fax:+63(2) 982-5600 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com Atty. Leila De Lima Secretary, Department of Justice Padre Faura St., Manila Direct Line 521-1908 Trunkline 523-84-81 loc.211/214 Fax: (+632) 523-9548 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org Hon. Loretta Ann P. Rosales Chairperson, Commission on Human Rights SAAC Bldg., UP Complex Commonwealth Avenue Diliman, Quezon City, Philippines Voice: (+632) 928-5655, 926-6188 Fax: (+632) 929 0102 Email: email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org Hon. Denis Habawel Governor, Province of Ifugao Capitol Plaza, Lagawe, Ifugao, Philippines Email: email@example.com Hon. Teodoro Baguilat Congressman Ifugao Lone District Representative Rm. N-315, North Wing, Constitution Hills 1126 Quezon City, Philippines Telefax : (+632) 931 5106 Email : firstname.lastname@example.org Rep. Guillermo Romarate Jr. Chair Committee on Human Rights House of Representatives 3/F Ramon V. Mitra Buillding, House of Representatives, Quezon City Telephone no. 9315001 local 7157, Telefax: 9324803 Rep. Nancy Catamco Chair National Cultural Communities Committee House of Representatives 3/F Annex Building, House of Representatives, Quezon City Telephone no. 932-3909 This APPEAL FOR IMMEDIATE ACTION is prepared by the CORDILLERA PEOPLES ALLIANCE. Please send a copy of your email/mail/fax to the above-named government officials to our address below: Cordillera Peoples Alliance
Postal Address: 3F 55 Ferguson Road, Baguio City 2600, Philippines
Telephone No. +6374 4229754
Fax No. +6374 4437159
Facebook: Cordillera Peoples Alliance
-- Cordillera Peoples Alliance No. 55 Ferguson Road Baguio City 2600, Philippines Telephone No. +6374 4229754 Fax No. +6374 4437159 Email: email@example.com Webpage: www.cpaphils.org Facebook: Cordillera Peoples Alliance
URGENT APPEAL TO STOP BLOCKING OF THOUBAL RIVER/FILLING UP OF MAPITHEL DAM & TO DESIST FROM FORCED EVICTION IN MAPITHEL VALLEY,MANIPUR
2015: Time to End the Corporate War on the Poor. Time for Development Justice – See more at: http://peoplesgoals.org/2015-time-to-end-the-corporate-war-on-the-poor-time-for-development-justice/#sthash.LE3CpNoV.dpuf
2015 CPGSD Calendar for Download
. Good day everyone!
Ms. Shamina de Gonzaga Chair, 61st Annual DPI/NGO Conference & Former Special Advisor on NGO relations – ECOSOC to the President United Nations General Assembly 2005-2008 Co-founder, what moves you?
[APMM Statement on Erwiana’s victory (10/02/2015)
Congratulations to Erwiana and migrant workers fighting for justice!
10 February 2015 Press Statement For reference: Aaron Ceradoy, program officer Contact number: (852)27237536 Â Erwianaâ€™s win is the victory of the migrant movement Â A victory for Erwiana, a victory for all migrant workers. Â The Asia Pacific Mission for Migrants congratulates Erwiana Sulistyaningsih as the Wanchai District Court has given her employer the guilty verdict on 18 charges, including assault, inflicting bodily harm, criminal intimidation, failure to pay wages on time, and failure to give rest day and statutory holidays. Â We are happy for Erwiana because she deserves justice. We have seen how she has risen from being a victim to becoming a survivor, to stand up and fight for her case. She has also agreed to become an active part of a campaign that calls for justice not only for Erwiana but also for other abused and exploited migrant workers. Â Erwianaâ€™s victory is the victory of everyone who led, joined and participated in the campaign, service providers like the Mission For Migrant Workers and Bethune House Migrant Womenâ€™s Refuge who helped her throughout her case, and many people who in their own little way expressed support to the campaign and made Erwianaâ€™s fight their fight. Â The Justice for Erwiana, Justice for All Migrant Workers campaign is the expression of the collective effort of many migrant organizations as well as institutions and supporters in Hong Kong to raise awareness, support and active participation among the people to call for justice for Erwiana. This only shows that the collective struggle is indeed apt and correct. In a global system that means to exploit rather than to empower, to prioritize business profits over the interests and rights of peoples, to struggle and to fight is justified. Â Erwiana is among the many who are fighting exploitation and oppression caused by neoliberal globalization. It is the imposition of policies under neoliberal globalization that cause poverty, unemployment, landlessness and many other problems that force Erwiana and many others to migrate to look for work. It is the same policies and framework that cause the commodification and exploitation of migrant workers like Erwiana. It is for this reason that the likes of Erwiana join the growing migrant movement and fight. Â Erwianaâ€™s victory will add to the many victories of the growing international migrant movement and will serve as an inspiration to the heightening resolve of many migrant workers to collectively struggle for protection of rights, for justice, and an end to modern-day slavery. #
Faiths United Against Nuclear Weapons
SGI Peace News Newsletter introducing Soka Gakkai International (SGI)’s activities to promote a culture of peace
December, 2014 (Vol. 4)
|Faiths United Against Nuclear Weapons Vienna, Austria, Dec 6, 2014|
SGI, together with ICAN (International Campaign to Abolish Nuclear Weapons) and the World Council of Churches, in cooperation with Religions for Peace, organized an interfaith panel discussion titled “Faiths United Against Nuclear Weapons: Kindling hope, mustering courage” as part of the ICAN Civil Society Forum held prior to the Vienna Conference on the Humanitarian Impact of Nuclear Weapons. Panelists included individuals from Christianity, Islam, Buddhism, and Hinduism who exchanged their respective views on the theme. A joint statement calling for a nuclear-weapons-free world was issued as an outcome statement representing moral and ethical voices from the faith communities which was later officially announced at the intergovernmental conference ….more *Joint statement can be accessed from here: http://www.bmeia.gv.at/
SGI organized a showing of the exhibition “Seeds of Hope: Visions of sustainability, steps toward change” at the UNESCO World Conference on Education for Sustainable Development (ESD) at the Nagoya Congress Center. SGI also supported a workshop “Looking back to forge the future: Lessons learned from values-based ESD experiences” sponsored by Earth Charter International (ECI) as a side event. ….moreForum on Global Citizenship New York, US, Nov 18, 2014
SGI, together with the UN Alliance of Civilizations (UNAOC) and the Permanent Mission of Sri Lanka to the UN supported a Forum on Global Citizenship organized by Inter Press Service (IPS). Held in New York, the forum focused on two themes–global citizenship as a pathway to the culture of peace and the integration of global citizenship in international relations. …more SGI also participated in the conference “Toward a World Citizens Movement: Learning from the Grassroots” in Johannesburg which highlighted the need for new ways of learning and thinking on global citizenship …moreOn Eliminating Gender-based Violence Madrid, Spain, Nov 14, 2014
SGI-Spain held a lecture titled “Theory and Practice: The daily struggle against gender-based violence” in commemoration of the UN International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women (November 25). Professor Concha Roldán of the Spanish National Research Council (CSIC) spoke on gender-based violence from a historical perspective and highlighted that factors influencing violence against women have become more complex today. The roots of modern-day gender-based violence can, she said, be found in the historical subjugation and exclusion of women from civil and political arenas ….moreNGO Forum on Women’s Rights and Gender Equality Geneva, Switzerland, Nov 3-5, 2014
In preparation for the upcoming 20th anniversary of the Beijing Declaration and Platform for Action (Beijing+20) in 2015, regional reviews were held globally, preceded by NGO gatherings. At the Geneva NGO Forum for Beijing+20, SGI and Soroptimist International co-organized an interactive roundtable on the education and training of women. The roundtable was conducted in 3 groups with different topics: literacy and access to education, the training and continuation of education, and non-discrimination in education and training. Recommendations from the discussions were incorporated into the Geneva NGO Forum’s Report to Member States ….moreThis bimonthly SGI Peace News provides recent updates on SGI’s public educational activities to raise people’s awareness on issues such as nuclear disarmament, human rights, sustainable development, interfaith cooperation and humanitarian assistance.
Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.
Violence against women and girls is one of the most widespread violations of human rights. Young women around the globe possess the collective power to change their lives, their communities and the world we live in. As they face daily challenges, young women are continually developing innovative, effective ways to… Read more
17-11-2014 Press Release
On this International Day of Tolerance, I call on all people and governments to actively combat fear, hatred and extremism with dialogue, understanding and mutual respect. Let us advance against the forces of division and unite for our shared future. -UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon Tolerance is the foundation for mutual respect… Read more
Martin Luther King Jr. Biography
Martin Luther King Jr. Day, Monday January 19, 2015
BIO: http://www.biography.com/people/martin-luther-king-jr-9365086#synopsis http://www.timeanddate.com/holidays/us/martin-luther-king-day http://www.biography.com/news/black-history-civil-rights-activists-alabama-video http://www.njmomsguide.com/fun-things-to-do-on-martin-luther-kings-day-january-20-2014
Myles Munroe – The Power Of Purpose (Azusa ’90) – Full Video
Honouring Gandhi’s legacy, Deputy Secretary-General reaffirms power of peaceful protest
December 8, 2014
United Nations Student Conference on Human Rights 2014 Youth Activists for Human Rights – Volunteering for a Better World
————————————————————————————————— Dear everyone, Please find below our network’s statement for commemoration of the International Human Rights Day on Dec. 10th. The statement highlights the need to uphold human rights in the post-2015 agenda amid increasing corporate attacks to people’s rights and creeping influence in development processes and negotiations. Please widely circulate among your networks and share on your websites and social media accounts. The statement is available at http://peoplesgoals.org/
OPINION: On Reproductive Rights, Progress with Concerns
CFS calls to uphold human rights in Manipur Dear Colleagues, Our colleagues in Manipur are currently experiencing harassment, illegal arrests and killings from the military and police troops deployed as they protest against the militarization of their villages. Please see below the PCFS statement calling to uphold human rights in Manipur. APVVU, TVVVU, National Center for Labour, NAPM, and AP Matya Karual Union (Fisher Federation) have already endorsed the statement. The statement will also be sent to different actors in the Indian Government and Human Rights Commission. Please read and circulate widely. Also looking forward to your endorsements. Thank you very much. Best regards, April PCFS calls to uphold human rights in Manipur Dear Colleagues, Our colleagues in Manipur are currently experiencing harassment, illegal arrests and killings from the military and police troops deployed as they protest against the militarization of their villages. Please see below the PCFS statement calling to uphold human rights in Manipur. APVVU, TVVVU, National Center for Labour, NAPM, and AP Matya Karual Union (Fisher Federation) have already endorsed the statement. The statement will also be sent to different actors in the Indian Government and Human Rights Commission. Please read and circulate widely. Also looking forward to your endorsements. Thank you very much. Best regards, April 15 September 2014 The People’s Coalition on Food Sovereignty (PCFS) strongly condemns the brutal dispersal which led to the firing by the Manipur Police to the protesters against the imposition of Section 144 of the CrPC (Code of Criminal Procedure) and to end militarization at Ukhrul District headquarters last August 30. The police have opened fire and tear gas to the protesting crowd killing at least two and about ten were injured. The two casualties were named Ramkashing Vashi (26) and Mayopam Ramror (31), both protesting against the heavy militarization in the area. The Centre for Research and Advocacy in Manipur (CRAM), a member of PCFS, has condemned the incident and the brutality of the military and the police to their people. “The unfortunate incident at Ukhrul Town on August 30 is just an extensive of the barbarism and despotic rule unleashed by the law enforcing agencies of the Government of Manipur,” said by Sanaton Laishram, CRAM President. The Section 144 of CrPC was imposed by the state government after the killing of Ukhrul Autonomous District Council (ADC) vice chairman Ngalangzar Malue (60), by the militant outfit last July 12. The state government has imposed CrPC to further add military presence in the area. The imposition of the Section 144 of CrPC has led to heavy militarization in the area. The heavy militarization has not only created fear among the public but also hindered them from their daily work in the area. The conflict will not just tolerate brutality to the people, but will also hinder them from their basic rights and more importantly, their access to basic services and a threat to their food security. Just recently, Mr. Phulindro Konsam, Convenor of the Committee on Human Rights and about thirty (30) leaders from students and women’s organizations were arrested on 8th, 11th and 12th September 2014 by the Manipur police. They are human rights defenders fighting for the rights to self-determination and liberation of the indigenous peoples of Manipur. In this regard, PCFS would like to call to the Government and Human Rights Commission of India to investigate the situation and uphold human rights of the people of Manipur. This will include pulling out of military and police troops in the area and the immediate release of the following human rights defenders: Mr. Phulindro Konsam (54), Convenor, Committee on Human Rights (COHR) in Manipur Ms. Ph Sakhi, President, AMKIL Ms. Th Ramani, General Secretary, Nupi Samaj Ms. Longjam Memchoubi, President, Poirei Leimarol Meira Paibi Apunba Manipur Ms. L Gyaneshori, General Secretary, AMKIL Ms. Ch Janaki, Vice-president, Nupi Samaj Ms. RK Guni, Executive Member, Poirei Leimarol Meira Paibi Apunba Manipur Ms. Khumukcham (n) Naosekpam (o) Rashesori Devi (55) Moirangthem Angamba (34) Johnson Nongmaithem (29) Sumanta Monoharmayum (23) Elangbam Bijendra Meitei (22) Longjam Abothe Meitei (24) Md Sajad Buya (19) Sarangthem William Milton (25) Okram (n) Khomdram (o) Gunabati Hijam Ibema Devi (42) Nameirakpam Ibemcha (55) Sarangthem Manjit (27) Pukhrambam Arjun (45), Oinam Premjit (37) Yengkokpam Langamba (36) Soubam Rajendra (50) Wahengbam Sunil (28) The people of Manipur have the right to protest and assert their rights. Uphold human rights in Manipur! Fight for liberation, self-determination and food sovereignty of the people of Manipur! Long live international solidarity! The People’s Coalition on Food Sovereignty (PCFS) is a global network of various grassroots groups of small food producers particularly of peasant-farmer organizations and their support NGOs that work towards a People’s Convention on Food Sovereignty. Related articles: PCFS calls for protection of human rights defenders in Manipur
Making HealthGlobal http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=osV2bktvrbk http://www.un-ngls.org/spip.php?page=article_s&id_article=2818 http://unu.edu/ http://www.un.org/news/ 62nd Annual DPI/NGO Conference: For Peace and Development: Disarm Now! http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sDqecr1yZ_o United Nations University for Peace (UPEACE) http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=X2vXR2gzOtc
Side event: Human rights for all in sustainable development: Is the post-2015 process really delivering?
Human rights for all in sustainable development: Is the post-2015 process really delivering?
Side Event hosted by the Post-2015 Human Rights Caucus at the President of the General Assembly’s High-level Stocktaking Event on the Post-2015 Development Agenda (download pdf here)
Thursday 11 September 2014 United Nations Headquarters, Conference Room 1 (CR1) Conference Building. Last year, the UN Secretary General—in his report, “A life of dignity for all”—endorsed a sustainable development “vision of the future firmly anchored in human rights,” echoing widespread support from governments, civil society, and the UN Task Team that a holistic human rights framework must lie at the heart of the SDGs themselves, how they are financed, and in their monitoring and accountability infrastructure. At this liminal point in the debate over what will succeed the Millennium Development Goals, various members of the Post-2015 Human Rights Caucus—a cross-constituency coalition of development, environment, trade union, feminist and human rights organizations worldwide—will come together to evaluate whether the post-2015 process and the new proposal for sustainable development goals deliver on this vision. How do the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGS) and targets proposed by the Open Working Group stand up to the human rights litmus test? Are the SDGs “consistent with international law,” as member states agreed they would be in Rio+20? How well do they ensure the rights of indigenous peoples and other groups marginalized from economic and social development? Will the Goals—and the envisioned monitoring and accountability infrastructure—hold public and private actors to account for their human rights and right to development responsibilities? And how will these Goals be paid for in human rights-sensitive ways? Participants will debate these keystone questions, and in so doing lay out a blueprint for embedding human rights into the core of the post-2015 sustainable development agenda. Panelists include: Myrna Cunnigham, UN Permanent Forum on Indigenous Issues Savio Carvalho, Amnesty International Nerea Craviotto, Association for Women’s Rights in Development (AWID) Paul Quintos, IBON International Amanda McRae, Center for Reproductive Rights Reflections from Mac Darrow, UN Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights Moderated by Niko Lusiani, Center for Economic and Social Rights (CESR) and co-convener of the Post-2015 Human Rights Caucus For enquiries about this side event, please contact Luke Holland at firstname.lastname@example.org The Center for Economic and Social Rights (CESR) works to promote social justice through human rights. In a world where poverty and inequality deprive entire communities of dignity, justice and sometimes life, we seek to uphold the universal human rights of every human being to education, health, food, water, housing, work, and other economic, social and cultural rights essential to human dignity. Center for Economic and Social Rights | 162 Montague Street, 3rd Floor, Brooklyn, NY 11201 | +1 718 237-9145 | email@example.com
Equity, Justice:LGB Parents and Their Children Functioning Well Despite Confronting Discrimination
ACTION ALERT: SDGs and the human rights to water and sanitation
ACTION ALERT: LETTER TO THE UN SECRETARY-GENERAL! Dear All, As you are aware, the Mining Working Group at the UN and the Blue Planet Project have spearheaded the recent sign-on letter regarding the need for the Open Working Group on Sustainable Development Goals to include an explicit mention of the human right to water and sanitation. The letter has garnered more than 300 sign-ons – we thank you for your support and for your advocacy efforts to join this important fight. Despite our call, the latest “zero draft” of the SDGs text (30 June, 2014) has failed to include explicit mention of the human right to water and sanitation. Time is running out to influence the Open Working Group, as its 13th and last official session will be held July 14-18, with informals preceding it starting July 9. It is therefore essential that we unite in one last push to include the human rights language in the OWG report, particularly around the human right to water and sanitation. As a final step, we encourage you and your organizations to write to the office of UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon, through the online petition available here: [English] [Spanish]. In this pivotal moment, we must show the UN that we have not given up on human rights in the SDGs, and that they must ensure the inclusion of this language to ensure that the SDGS, and the post-2015 agenda, truly deliver for people’s human rights and the sanctity of our planet. Thank you for your support. Sincerely, The Mining Working Group and the Blue Planet Project ALERTA DE ACCIÓN – CARTA AL SECRETARIO GENERAL DE LA ONU! Estimadas y estimados, Como ustedes saben, el Grupo de Trabajo sobre Minería en la ONU y el Proyecto Planeta Azul han encabezado la reciente carta, y pidieron firmas, sobre la necesidad de que el Grupo de Trabajo Abierto (GTA) sobre los Objetivos de Desarrollo Sostenible (ODS) para que se incluya una mención explícita de la necesidad de garantizar el derecho humano al agua y al saneamiento. La carta ha recibido más de 300 firmas complementarias – le damos gracias por su apoyo y por sus actividades de promoción al unirse a esta importante lucha. A pesar de nuestro esfuerzo, el último “borrador cero” del texto ODS (30 de junio de 2014) no ha logrado incluir una mención explícita del derecho humano al agua y saneamiento. El tiempo se agota para influir en el Grupo de Trabajo Abierto (GTA), como la 13ª y última sesión oficial se llevará a cabo del 14 al 18 de julio con los informales precedentes a partir del 9 de julio.Por tanto, es esencial que nos unamos en un último esfuerzo para la inclusión de lenguaje específico sobre los derechos humanos en el informe GTA, especialmente en torno al derecho humano al agua y al saneamiento. Como paso final, le animamos a usted y a sus organizaciones a escribir a la oficina del Secretario General de la ONU Ban Ki-moon, a través de la petición en línea disponible [aquí]. En este momento crucial, debemos mostrar a la ONU que no hemos renunciado a los derechos humanos en los ODS, y que deben garantizar la inclusión de este lenguaje para asegurar que los ODS, y el programa posterior al 2015, realmente entregan los derechos humanos y la santidad de nuestro planeta a la gente. Muchas gracias por su apoyo. Sinceramente, El Grupo de Trabajo sobre Minería y el Proyecto Planeta Azul Kathryn (Katie) Tobin territoryunchartered.blogspot.com @uncharteredKT —————————————————————————————————–
Human Rights Standards for Conservation-Call for Comments
- Which actors bear human rights obligations and responsibilities in the context of conservation initiatives?
- What are their obligations and responsibilities?
- What are the grievance mechanisms available to peoples and communities in cases of violations of their human rights?
To contribute to these important reports, please email Natural Justice’s Harry Jonas (firstname.lastname@example.org) or IIED’s Dilys Roe (email@example.com). Please feel free to forward this email to others who may be interested.
TWN Info: Human Rights Council Historic resolution adopted for a legally binding instrument on TNCs
Subject: TWN Info: Human Rights Council Historic resolution adopted for a legally binding instrument on TNCs Title : TWN Info: Human Rights Council – Historic resolution adopted for a legally binding instrument on TNCs Date : 30 June 2014 Contents: Human Rights Council: Historic resolution adopted for a legally binding instrument on TNCs Geneva, 30 June (Kinda Mohamadieh*) – The United Nations Human Rights Council (HRC) adopted, through a vote, a historic and significant resolution to start a process for an international legally instrument on transnational corporations. Officially entitled “Elaboration of an international legally binding instrument on Transnational Corporations and other Business Enterprises with respect to Human Rights” (A/HRC/26/L.22) the resolution was adopted on 26 June at the 26th session of the HRC. The resolution was co-sponsored by Ecuador and South Africa, and also supported by Bolivia, Cuba and Nevezuela. In the vote on the resolution, 20 Members of the HRC supported the resolution, while 13 Members abstained, and 14 Members voted against it. Countries that supported the resolution include: Algeria, Benin, Burkina Faso, China, Congo, Cote D’Ivoire, Cuba, Ethiopia, India, Indonesia, Kazakhstan, Kenya, Morocco, Namibia, Pakistan, Philippines, Russian Federation, South Africa, Venezuela, Vietnam. Countries that abstained include: Argentina, Botswana, Brazil, Chile, Costa Rica, Gabon, Kuwait, Maldives, Mexico, Peru, Saudi Arabia, Sierra Leone, and United Arab Emirates. Countries that voted against the resolution include: Austria, Czech Republic, Estonia, France, Germany, Ireland, Italy, Japan, Montenegro, Republic of Korea, Romania, the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, United Kingdom, and United States of America. The resolution provides for the establishment of an open-ended intergovernmental working group (IWG) that is mandated with elaborating an international legally binding instrument to regulate, in international human rights law, the activities of transnational corporations and other business enterprises. The resolution provides that the IWG shall hold its first session for five working days in 2015, before the 30th session of the HRC. The resolution also provides that the first two sessions of the working group shall be dedicated to conducting constructive deliberations on the content, scope, nature and form of the future international instrument. The resolution mandates the Chairperson-Rapporteur of the IWG to prepare elements for the draft legally binding instrument for substantive negotiations at the commencement of the third session of the working group, taking into consideration the discussions held at its first two sessions. It recommends that the first meeting of the IWG serve to collect inputs, including written inputs, from States and relevant stakeholders on possible principles and elements of such an international legally binding instrument. The resolution requests the IWG to submit a report on progress made to the HRC for consideration at its thirty-first session. The resolution explains in a footnote that the reference to ‘other business enterprises’ denotes all business enterprises that have a transnational character in their operational activities, while it does not apply to local businesses registered in terms of relevant domestic law. The resolution also makes reference as well to the important role of civil society actors in promoting corporate social responsibility and in preventing, mitigating, and seeking remedy for adverse human rights impacts of transnational corporations (TNCs) and other business enterprises. In presenting the resolution to the HRC, Ambassador Luis Gallegos Chiriboga of Ecuador stressed that the Council owes its existence to those who tirelessly fight to protect human rights and the victims of human rights violation, including those that are most needful for protection and support. He called upon the Council to correct injustices, including the lack of protection for victims of violations of human rights abuses carried out by TNCs. He noted that these corporations benefit from binding international protections. However, victims of harmful corporate activities lack access to legal protection, while only having available voluntary norms. Ambassador Chiriboga focused on the importance of protecting victims, noting that victims of disasters, such as that by Union Carbide in Bhopal (India), Shell in the Niger Delta (Nigeria), and Chevron in Ecuador, among others, are still waiting for remedy and fair compensation. He underlined the support of more than 500 civil society organizations from around the world, European Parliamentarians, and the Vatican to the initiative towards elaborating a legally binding instrument on TNCs and other business enterprises with respect to human rights. Ambassador Chiriboga also stressed Ecuador’s support for implementation of the United Nations Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights. [On 16 June 2011, the UN HRC endorsed by consensus the “Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights: Implementing the United Nations ‘Protect, Respect and Remedy’ Framework” proposed by UN Special Representative John Ruggie (Resolution 17/4). More information available at: http://www.business-
A world without forced migration; Why migrants should support the call for development justice
Apologies for cross-posting
Asia Pacific Mission for Migrants (APMM) Office Address: G/F, No.2 Jordan Road, Kowloon, Hong Kong SAR Tel. no.: (852) 2723-7536 Fax no.: (852) 2735-4559 General E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org Other Email Addresses: Managing Director : email@example.com Marriage Migrants Program : firstname.lastname@example.org
Undocumented Migrants: email@example.com
Briefer for Migrants ————————————————————————————————
New Working Paper: Corporate Influence on the Business and Human Rights Agenda of the UN
New Working Paper: Corporate Influence on the Business and Human Rights Agenda of the UN
Download the Working Paper here. Efforts to create an international legally binding instrument to hold transnational corporations accountable for human rights abuses have recently gained new momentum. In September 2013 the Government of Ecuador delivered a statement on behalf of 85 member states of the UN at the Human Rights Council asking for a legally binding framework to regulate the activities of transnational corporations. Many civil society organizations called on the Human Rights Council to take steps towards the elaboration of a binding Treaty on Business and Human Rights. These efforts are only the latest link in a chain of initiatives at the UN to hold corporations accountable to the public. They started in the 1970s with the discussions about a Code of Conduct for Transnational Corporations (TNCs) and continued in the late 1990s with the attempt to adopt the UN Norms on the Responsibilities of Transnational Corporations and Other Business Enterprises with Regard to Human Rights. All these efforts met with vigorous opposition from TNCs and their business associations, and they ultimately failed. At the same time, corporate actors have been extremely successful in implementing public relations strategies that have helped to present business enterprises as good corporate citizens seeking dialogue with Governments, the UN and decent concerned ‘stakeholders’, and able to implement environment, social and human rights standards through voluntary Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) initiatives. The UN Global Compact and the UN Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights became prime examples of an allegedly pragmatic approach based on consensus, dialogue and partnership with the corporate sector – in contrast to regulatory approaches to hold corporations accountable. The working paper gives an overview of the debate from the early efforts to formulate the UN Code of Conduct to the current initiative for a binding Treaty on Business and Human Rights. It particularly focuses on the responses by TNCs and their leading interest groups to the various UN initiatives, specifies the key actors and their objectives. In this context it also highlights features of the interplay between business demands and the evolution of the regulatory debates at the UN. This provides an indication of the degree of influence that corporate actors exert and their ability – in cooperation with some powerful UN member states – to prevent international binding rules for TNCs at the UN. The working paper ends with remarks on what could be done to counteract and reverse corporate influence on the UN human rights agenda. This constitutes an indispensable prerequisite for progress towards effective legally binding instruments on business and human rights.
Corporate Influence on the Business and Human Rights Agenda of the United Nations
Author: Jens Martens Working Paper, June 2014 Published by Brot für die Welt/Global Policy Forum/MISEREOR Aachen/Berlin/Bonn/New York ISBN: 978-3-943126-16-7 Download the Working Paper here.
-- Wolfgang Obenland Global Policy Forum Königstr. 37a 53115 Bonn Germany Tel. +49 (0)228 96 50 707 wolfgangobenland@globalpolicy.
Human Rights Council – Historic resolution adopted for a legally binding instrument on transnational corporations
Subject: Human Rights Council – Historic resolution adopted for a legally binding instrument on transnational corporations
Noelene Nabulivou, Fiji
– The Women’s Major Group (WMG) was created as one of nine Major Groups after the 1992 UN Conference on Environment and Development held in Rio de Janeiro. This list serve is for members of the Women Major Group following the Post Rio+20 process (Financing SD, SDGs-post2015) as well as for members of the Women Major Group following Environment processes (UNEP). The Organizing Partners (OPs) of the Post Rio+20 process that coordinate the group rotate periodically. The current WMG OPs are Women in Europe for a Common Future (WECF) and the Women’s Environment and Development Organization (WEDO) and Global Forest Coalition (GFC). The co-facilitators of the WMG at UNEP are currently Niger Delta Women’s Movement, Soroptomists Kenya, WECF International and GFC, and focal points APWLD and Earth Care Africa. —————————————————————————————————
Restless Development News – ECOSOC Forum, End Sexual Violence in Conflict Summit and more
OPENING THE ECOSOC FORUM Our Chief Executive Nik Hartley spoke at the United Nations as the opening address, alongside Secretary General Ban Ki-moon, the President of the UN Economic and Social Council, and the President of the UN General Assembly. This is a summary of his speech >> READ MORE MAKING AN IMPACT AT END SEXUAL VIOLENCE IN CONFLICT SUMMIT Our discussion at Fringe Event saw some of our international volunteers who went to Sierra Leone speaking about their work on sexual reproductive health. We also premiered a film from Sierra Leone that made a big impression on UNHCR Special Envoy Angelina Jolie. >> READ MORE YOUTHMAP PROGRAMME IN UGANDA SEES 100 GRADUATES ON INTERNSHIPS The YouthMap programme in Uganda has placed 100 graduates on internships so far, of which 42 already secured full time emplotment or stared a business. >> READ MORE TANZANIA GOVERNMENT AWARDED FOR OUR “GIRLS LET’S BE LEADERS” PROGRAMME Tanzanian Government awarded thanks to its role in promoting the “Mabinti Tushike Hatamu!” (Girls, Let’s be Leaders!) programme, delivered by Restless Development, TACAIDS and UNICEF. >> READ MORE Restless Development / Join us on www.restlessdevelopment.org 7 Wootton Street London SE1 8TG UK ————————————————————————————————– .
Guide to International Organizations, The Hague.
http://www.denhaag.nl/en/residents/International-The-Hague/international-organisations.htm http://www.thehaguepeacejustice.com/static/projectsites/vrede-en-recht/downloads/en/corporate-brochure.pdf Information The Hague internationale: http://www.denhaag.nl/home/bewoners/gemeente/internationale-stad.htm http://www.denhaag.nl/en/residents/International-The-Hague.htm http://www.denhaagvrederecht.nl/vrede-en-recht.htm http://www.thehaguepeacejustice.com/peace-and-justice.htm http://www.internationalefuncties.nl/#ref-minbuza Contact: Mrs. Winny van Willigen Gemeente Den Haag Bureau Internationale Zaken Postbus 12.600 2500 DJ Den Haag tel. 070 – 353 2298 / 06 11341036 fax 070 – 353 2013 firstname.lastname@example.org / maandag, dinsdag en donderdag Municipality of The Hague Department of International Affairs PO Box 12.600 2500 DJ The Hague The Netherlands tel. +31 70 353 2298 / +31 6 11341036 fax +31 70 353 2013 Contact: email@example.com / Monday, Tuesday and Thursday —————————————————————————————————–
. Worldview Mission, Headquarter, “Kingdom of the Netherlands” Worldview Mission, Suriname http://worldviewmission.nl/?page_id=13883 Contact: Ms. Helene H. Oord Em: firstname.lastname@example.org / email@example.com Address: Beemsterhoek 14, 2905 XA, Capelle A/D IJssel, Rotterdam Mob: +31(0) 636108563 / +31(0) 107857863 Tel/Fax (Netherlands-EU) , Registered: RSIN, ANBI 851082403 B01 CHAMBER OF COMMERCE K.v.K. 22.214.171.124 SEPA: Bank Account nr.: NL08 ABNA 0506 0822 02 https://www.geef.nl/externalMod.php?gd=5052&taal=nl_NL Mapping http://worldviewmission.geef.nl/kaart .