As apartheid deepens Israel targets the UN settlements database

The Israeli government and its allies are mobilising to try and thwart a United Nations list of companies complicit in illegal settlements in the occupied Palestinian territory (oPt). These efforts are taking place in parallel to significant initiatives by figures within and outside of the Israeli government to normalise the presence of the settlements, moves which could contribute towards a future, formal annexation of sections of the West Bank.

On 24 March 2016 the UN Human Rights Council (UNHRC) adopted a resolution by 32 votes to 0 (with 15 abstentions) that called for the establishment of “a database of all business enterprises involved” in settlement activities in the occupied Palestinian territory (oPt), to be updated annually. While some saw the vote as “a symbolic victory for the Palestinians,” others went further, hailing it a “landmark decision” after “years of toothless UN condemnations of settlements”. The Boycott Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) Movement praised the resolution for affirming that “companies must be held to account for their participation in Israeli violations”.
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