Swedwatch calls for integration of business and human rights into peace and security frameworksARTICLE | 1 December 2020
Swedwatch recently joined an online dialogue with the UN Working Group on Business and Human Rights and argued for more decisive action to integrate business and human rights into peace and security frameworks.
There is well documented evidence that the worst forms of business-related human rights violations tend to happen in conflict-affected contexts. In a recent report to the UN General Assembly the UN Working Group on Business and Human Rights outlined the practical measures that states and businesses should take to prevent and address business-related human rights abuse in conflict and post-conflict contexts.
Swedwatch has previously highlighted the need to integrate responsible business practices into peace and security agendas to prevent armed conflicts from reigniting and promote peaceful and inclusive societies. During the dialogue Swedwatch researcher Hannah Peters called for a holistic approach to peace and security, which takes respect for human rights fully into account in business, trade and investments.
“Few states link the granting of trade and investment incentives, including export credits, to a business’s engagement in heightened due diligence in conflict settings,” she said.
“There is a need for international financial institutions to prioritize investments involving responsible business conduct in conflict affected regions.”
She also addressed the urgent need to promote responsible exits built on ongoing human rights due diligence, monitoring frameworks concerning human rights impacts in trade and investment agreements, and the inclusion of responsible business conduct in discussions at the UN Peacebuilding Commission.
The online dialogue was co-organised by the Geneva Academy of International Humanitarian Law and Human Rights, the Quaker United Nations Office and the Friedrich-Ebert-Stiftung, with Amnesty International contributing as a discussant.
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