UN blacklist of corporations that do business with Israel moves forward

Following up on previous threats regarding a blacklist of corporations that conduct business in Judea and Samaria and other regions in Israel, a UN agency has reportedly begun circulating letters to these companies.

The United Nations Human Rights Council (UNHRC) appears to be preparing to make good on its previous warnings that it will publish a blacklist of businesses who have dealings in the Judea and Samaria region of Israel. While these businesses improve the economy in this area, benefiting both Israelis and Palestinians, the UNHRC appears committed to a boycott policy that many have demonstrated actually harms Palestinian residents of the region.

According to a report on Thursday in Yediot Aharonot, 25 Israeli companies have already been targeted by the UNHRC for its “database,” a term the agency is using for its anti-Israel blacklist. Multinational corporations that have also apparently been targeted include household names such as Hewlett-Packard, Motorola, and RE/MAX real estate. Similarly, Channel 2 reported that US companies such as Priceline.com, Coca-Cola, and Caterpillar have also been implicated.

The UN’s proposed blacklist has been controversial since details of its existence emerged several months ago. For many Israelis, the notion that businesses operating in the Jewish state will be singled out and ostracized feels eerily reminiscent of Nazi tactics in Germany leading up to the Holocaust, which included boycotts of Jewish businesses.

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While the UNHRC claims that businesses with dealings in Judea and Samaria, the Golan Heights, and certain portions of Jerusalem violate human rights law, the reality on the ground tells a different story. In a report in the Jerusalem Post, a leading representative of Jewish communities in the Judea and Samaria region, Oded Revivi, retorted, “I suggest that instead of boycotting the companies on the blacklist the UN should hand them Nobel Peace Prizes. These companies are the ones that employ and support thousands of Palestinian families.”

The UNHRC has a longstanding tradition of fixating on Israel as the target of its human rights initiatives, singling out the Jewish state instead of focusing on the egregious practices and heinous crimes committed by regimes in a variety of countries in the Middle East and Africa.

By: Ebin Sandler, World Israel News