High-risk and conflict areas

In areas where there is war or conflict or where the state is weak, there is a higher risk of human rights violations. Companies that operate in such areas need to know and act responsibly on these risks.

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High-risk and conflict areas

In areas where there is war and conflict, human rights abuses often take place. The same applies to countries where the government is weak or undemocratic. Companies with operations or suppliers in such countries or areas run a greater risk of causing or contributing to abuses. This places considerable pressure on companies to identify the risks in advance and to manage them.

In some areas, it is close to impossible to operate as a company without contributing to human rights abuses. In other cases, companies can contribute towards positive development even in challenging situations, provided the risks are managed appropriately.

When governments are weak

In cases where the government is unable or unwilling to protect its citizens, companies need to take more active responsibility to ensure that human rights are not abused in connection with their activities. It is particularly important to have local knowledge in such situations and for companies to know who they are working with as operations in high-risk and conflict areas involve a greater risk of being associated with abuses committed by other groups.

Environmental and human rights defenders

Environmental and human rights defenders (EHRDs) in high-risk and conflict areas often have to endure threats against their lives and personal safety. By identifying risks to these groups, and by cooperating and maintaining a dialogue with civil society, companies can help ensure that freedom of opinion and expression is respected.

Role of the Swedish government

The Swedish government has a specific responsibility in high-risk and conflict areas to ensure that Swedish companies are not involved in abuses, and to make companies aware of the heightened risk.

We had to leave. The military said they could not guarantee our safety anymore because the land belonged to the company.

Person affected by a dam construction in Colombia

Report: Dränkta rättigheter, flytande ansvar