UN Rights Body to Create Blacklist of Companies in West Bankby
Move part of effort against goods made in occupied territory
Netanyahu has said boycott movement is a threat to Israel
The United Nations Human Rights Council passed a resolution to create a list of all Israeli and international companies operating directly or indirectly in the West Bank, East Jerusalem and the Golan Heights.
Egypt, Pakistan and other Muslim nations helped advance the resolution, which also condemned Israel’s occupation of and “settlement activities in the Occupied Palestinian Territory.”
The resolution, which passed with 32 votes in favor and 15 abstentions, calls on the Office of the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights “to produce a database of all business enterprises, both Israeli and international, involved in the activities in the settlements,” that would be updated once a year. There were no votes against the resolution, which was adopted Thursday in Geneva.
Pressure is increasing in Europe and elsewhere to sanction Israel for settlements on Palestinian lands. Efforts to pressure Israel over its policies toward the Palestinians through boycotts, divestment and sanctions, better known as the BDS movement, has been described as major threat by Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.
Israel’s foreign ministry condemned the vote in a statement. The outcome “is further proof of the sick obsession of this body, which deals primarily with Israel while ignoring the main arenas of human rights violations in the world, foremost Syria, Libya and North Korea,” the ministry said.
Speaking this week to American Jewish leaders, Netanyahu appealed to the U.S. to block any UN-imposed peace settlement because it would be “stacked against us” and would suggest to Palestinians that they can “stab their way to a state.”