Russell Tribunal on Palestine
The second international session of the RToP will take place in London, on 20, 21 and 22 November 2010. It will examine International corporate complicity in Israel’s Violations of International Human Rights Law, International Humanitarian Law, and War Crimes.
London proposal document (PDF)
After establishing the responsibilities and obligations of corporations under international law, this session will assess the conduct of a series of companies regarding different aspects of Israel’s violations of the rights of the Palestinian People. The Tribunal will also seek to uncover the system that allows corporations to act in such unlawful ways, and to show in what ways States and international organisations could be held accountable for this.
During this session, the jury will be examining cases on:
- Corporations providing tangible services and infrastructure that support illegal Israeli settlements and the occupation of Palestinian territory in the West Bank, Gaza and East Jerusalem.
- Foreign banks and other financial institutions providing financial services to illegal settlements and Israeli banks etc. trading abroad who provide financial services to illegal settlements.
- Foreign companies that manufacture products inside the settlements and industrial zones in the West Bank and Israeli companies that export agricultural and other products from the settlements and industrial zones in the West Bank,
- Foreign companies involved in the export of arms and the infrastructure of war, occupation, colonisation and repression in the Occupied Palestinian Territories and Israeli companies that export arms and repressive hardware/knowledge abroad
Just as in the Barcelona session, experts and witnesses will be invited to present these cases to the jury. Challenged corporations will also be invited to defend their position, before the jury presents its conclusions in an international press conference.
The following personalities have confirmed their participation as jury members:
- Mairead Corrigan Maguire, Nobel Peace Laureate 1976, Northern Ireland
- John Dugard, Professeur of International law, Former Special rapporteur on Human Rights in the Palestinian Territories, South Africa
- Ronald Kasrils, writer and activist, South Africa
- Michael Mansfield, barrister, President of the Haldane Society of Socialist Lawyers, United Kingdom
- José Antonio Martin Pallin, emeritus judge, Chamber II, Supreme Court, Spain
- Cynthia McKinney, former member of the US Congress and 2008 presidential candidate, Green Party, USA
- Aminata Traoré, author and former Minister of Culture of Mali
- Alice Walker, Poet and writer, USA.
Following this session, another international session is foreseen for 2011 in South Africa, which should be followed by a session in the United States of America in the same year. The whole process of the RToP will end with the organisation of an International final session, which will make a final judgement that will encompass conclusions of each session.
LONDON SESSION of the RUSSELL TRIBUNAL on PALESTINE
“Corporate Complicity in Israel’s Violations in International Human Rights Law and International Humanitarian Law”
20th to 22nd November 2010
Registration fee: £15 GBP
Day One: Saturday 20th November
Law Society, Chancery Lane, London WC2A 1PL
||Pr. Pierre Galand (Belgium) will open the London session in the name of the International Organising Committee of the RToP.
Introduction to the Second Session of the Russell Tribunal on Palestine by Ambassador of France Stéphane Hessel (France) and Michael Mansfield QC (U.K.).
||I. The Legal Framework Relevant to Corporate Conduct
Legal experts, Richard Hermer QC (UK), Yasmine Gado (U.S.A.) and Dr. William Bourdon (France) will set out the tribunal’s legal framework. Each expert will discuss the details of U.K., U.S.A.and French law respectively, their relevance to the application of international law as well as their relevance to this session’s focus upon corporate complicity.
||II. Implications of Corporate Activities In and Around Settlements (Part 1)
Dr. Dalit Baum (Israel) and Hugh Lanning (UK) will provide an overview of the issues relating to business practices in relation to settlements and the settlement industry.
Fayez Al Taneeb (Palestine) and Wael Natheef (Palestine) will speak about the direct impact this is having on Palestinians as workers and residents in and around settlements.
||II. Implications of Corporate Activities In and Around Settlements (Part 2)
Adri Nieuwhof (Netherlands), will speak as the lead expert on public contracts regulations and the French multinational, Veolia, and its business practices in the occupied Palestinian territories.
Ghaleb Mashni (Palestine) will offer an account of the impact this has had on Palestinians.
John Dorman (Ireland) will round off the session with an account of the relationships between Cement Roadstone Holdings and the construction of the wall.
||III. Trade and Labelling of Settlement Goods
A Representative from Al Haq (Palestine) will offer an overview of the legal issues relating to the trade and labelling of settlement goods.
||Christophe Perrin (France) will follow with an account of the business practices of agricultural producers, Carmel Agrexco.
Nancy Kricorian and Rae Abileah (U.S.A.) will discuss the cosmetics company Ahava and its production of spa products.
Phon Van Den Biesen (Netherlands) will discuss issues relating to labelling of products from Israeli settlements and the day will be closed by Genevieve Coudrais (France), who will speak about Soda Stream.
||End of Day One
Day Two: Sunday 21st November 2010
Law Society, Chancery Lane, London. WC2A 1PL
Pr. Pierre Galand (Belgium)will open the second day in the name of the International Organising Committee of the RToP.
||IV. Financial Services Sector
Merav Amir (Israel) Will offer an overview of both Israeli and international finance companies and their connection to the Israeli occupation of Palestine.
Mario Franssen (Belgium) will speak on the Dexia group.
Saskia Muller (Netherlands) will speak on the PFZW Pension Fund.
||V. The Security Industry and the War Industry
An overview of the security industry and the nature of corporate involvement will be set out by John Hilary (U.K.).
Maria LaHood (U.S.A.) will provide information on Caterpillar and the use of its equipment in Israeli military practices.
Josh Ruebner (U.S.A.) will follow with additional information and evidence relating to Caterpillar’s business practices.
Merav Amir and or Dr. Dalit Baum (Israel) will follow with an account of British private security firm G4S .
||V. The Security Industry and the War Industry
Shir Hever (Israel) and Jamal Juma’a (Palestine) will speak about Elbit Systems and their role in security practices by the Israeli state.
Paul Troop (U.K.), will discuss recent court cases against UK based arms manufacturing companies EDO ITT and Raytheon.
The final speaker, Ben Hayes (U.K.) will give details relating to EU subsidies to the security industry.
||Speaking time for corporations**
Wrap up questions
The Tribunal may want to ‘recall’ experts from the session itself or other international legal experts to ask for clarification on legal issues in light of what will have been heard throughout the two days.
Round up and overview of the two days, what has taken place and the way forward.
||End of Day Two
||The jury withdraws for deliberations
Day Three, Monday 22nd November 2010
The Amnesty International Human Rights Action Centre will host a press conference setting out conclusions from the second session of the RToP.
**All corporations whose business practices will been interrogated during the session have been contacted by registered post and invited to attend the session.