Violations of human rights and the rights of peoples and nature have become an all too common part of transnational corporations’ operations. There are no binding rules for corporations on Human Rights at the international level. That’s why again this year, in coordination with the Treaty Alliance, the Global Campaign is returning to Geneva to advocate directly to UN member states to engage in a process to create a treaty, and to ensure they hear the voices of communities impacted by corporate violations loud and clear. Inside and Outside the UN dozens of delegates from social movements and civil society networks worldwide will participate in the Week of Peoples Mobilisation.
Despite the track record of systemic and systematic violations of the range of human rights, the efforts to establish legally binding obligations and an instrument of enforcement within the UN system have been defeated by determined corporate opposition. The current Guiding Principles developed by the former Special Representative of the UN Secretary General, John Ruggie, do not create "any new international legal obligations" and are therefore non-binding.
The argument over what action to take against Saddam Hussein is driven by the rhetoric of war. But can peaceful, legal action against Iraq's ruthless dictator be effective? The long campaign to bring Augusto Pinochet of Chile to justice offers an encouraging precedent.
Debate over the 10-year-plus war in Afghanistan tends to focus on how and when it "can be won," obscuring the fundamental question of whether it was morally acceptable in the first place. Now as the US gets closer to consolidating its imperial presence in the region for decades to come, the high cost to the Afghani people continues to be ignored.