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European Parliament supports UN Treaty to force corporations to respect human rights

8 October 2018

European Parliament supports UN Treaty to force corporations to respect human rights

The European Parliament has expressed its explicit support for a UN treaty that will make it compulsory for companies to respect human rights and give victims the right to go to law. In doing so the Parliament is looking to put pressure on both the European  Union and the representatives of the member states during the next round of talks in Geneva, which begin on 15th October.

Foto: SP

Anne-Marie Mineur and Lola Sanchez Caldentey (Podemos) in the plenary hall of the United Nations Human Rights Council (UNHRC)

Euro-MP Anne-Marie Mineur has welcomed the result of the vote on the issue. “In the past the EU has done nothing in response to encouragement from the Parliament to support the realisation of this treaty. On the contrary, it did everything it could to undermine the process. That a resolution has now been adopted which unequivocally expresses support for a radical treaty that would force corporations to respect human rights is an extremely clear signal.” 

Negotiations on the treaty will probably last for years yet. After three years of preparation the first round of talks on a proposed text will now take place. “The corporate lobby will undoubtedly make strong attempts to influence the process, and the question is how far those who took this initiative can go without losing a lot of countries' support,” says Mineur. “This resolution at least shows that there is a great deal of support in the European Parliament for a firm treaty.” 

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