The United Nations Human Rights Council has released a list of more than 100 companies it says are operating in Israeli communities in Judea and Samaria. In a report, the council said that the activities of these companies “raised particular human rights concerns.” (As in too many Arab Muslims working for Israeli businesses there?)
World Israel News The list is dominated by Israeli companies, including banks and construction firms.
However, it also lists a number of international firms, including travel companies Airbnb, Expedia, and TripAdvisor, tech giant Motorola, and construction and infrastructure companies including France’s Egis Rail and a British company, JC Bamford Excavators.
In January 2019, Amnesty International issued a report, calling on the Airbnb, Booking.com, Expedia, and TripAdvisor digital booking sites to refrain from conducting business in areas captured by Israel in the 1967 war. At the time, Israel’s Public Security and Strategic Affairs Minister Gilad Erdan responded with a tweet charging that “Amnesty has become a leader in the anti-Semitic BDS [Boycott, Divestment, Sanctions] campaign.”
Certain critics compared the UN blacklist to the Nazi boycott of Jewish businesses in Germany in the 1930s. “Working at the behest of the notorious UN Human Rights Council, the UN Office for the High Commissioner for Human Rights has officially decided to endorse anti-Semitic BDS by issuing a defamatory list of companies it claims are supposedly involved in ‘settlement activity,’” charged NGO Monitor on Wednesday.
“These companies have done nothing wrong and many are involved in providing goods and services to Palestinians pursuant to the Oslo Accords,” said NGO Monitor Legal Advisor Anne Herzberg in a statement.
“This list was made in conjunction with pro-BDS and PFLP-linked NGOs,” she added. The PFLP is the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine, designated a terrorist organization by the United States, Japan, Canada, Australia, and the European Union, as well as Israel.
Herzberg called on countries targeted by the publication of the blacklist, particularly Israel and the United States, to “reassess their relationships with Commissioner Bachelet’s office, including cancelling all cooperation and the millions of dollars and euros provided to her each year in funding.
Times of Israel On Wednesday evening, the Israeli Foreign Ministry tweeted that the UN human rights commissioner’s “announcement regarding the publication of a ‘blacklist’ of companies represents the ultimate surrender to pressure exerted by countries and organizations interested in harming Israel.”
In response, Israel is suspending its ties with the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights, the Foreign Ministry announced Wednesday, several hours after the UN body published a list of 112 companies that do business in West Bank settlements.
Foreign Minister Israel Katz’s office said he ordered the “exceptional and harsh measure” in retaliation for Michelle Bachelet’s office “serving the BDS campaign,” referring to the anti-Israel Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions Movement.
The Human Rights Council consists of countries that “do not know the meaning of human rights,” the foreign minister went on. “Since its establishment, the council has not taken a single meaningful step towards the preservation of human rights, but has rather served to protect some of the most discriminatory regimes in the world.”