Respecting human rights.

Fonction News

The United Nations Commission on Human Rights in Geneva is discussing proposals that would oblige multinationals to respect human rights.

A Swiss non-governmental organisation has called on commission members not to cave in to pressure from big business.

The Berne Declaration states that international firms must not be allowed to evade their legal responsibilities towards employees and the environment.

The Commission meeting is considering the "norms of the responsibility of trans-national companies and other business enterprises with respect to human rights".

The UN's Sub-Commission for Human Rights adopted the declaration last August. The norms--still at an early stage--are to bring together existing treaties and instruments on human rights and business practices, and explain how they can be applied to companies. However, the agreement adds that it is up to individual states...

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