PA cabinet leader threatens businesses on UN blacklist

Mohammad Shtayyeh threatens to take legal action against companies on UNHRC's blacklist of companies doing business in Judea and Samaria.

Elad Benari ,

Mohammad Shtayyeh
Mohammad Shtayyeh

Palestinian Authority (PA) cabinet leader Mohammad Shtayyeh on Wednesday threatened legal action against the companies listed in the UN Human Rights Council’s blacklist of companies doing business in Israeli communities in Judea and Samaria.

"Publishing the database of investors in the settlements is a step towards exposing settlements and attempts to legalize them, as well as implementing international resolutions rejecting them, especially the decision of the International Court of Justice ruling on the illegality of settlements built in the West Bank, Jerusalem and the Golan Heights, and the need to take a clear position regarding them," he said in a statement quoted by the PA’s official Wafa news agency.

Shtayyeh called on companies to immediately close their offices and branches in “the illegal Israeli settlements”, whose existence violates international laws and UN resolutions.

"We will pursue the companies listed in the report legally through international legal institutions and through the courts in their countries for their role in violating human rights, and we will demand compensation for illegally using our occupied lands and for engaging in economic activity in our lands without submitting to Palestinian laws and paying taxes," he said.

Shtayyeh proposed to these companies that they consider the possibility of moving their factories and branches to PA cities and villages.

His comments came after the UNHRC published a list of 112 companies which operate in Jewish communities in Judea and Samaria.

The council claims the companies, including Airbnb, Expedia, and TripAdvisor, violate international law by continuing to operate in the Jewish communities in the area.

Foreign Minister Yisrael Katz responded to the publication of the list, saying that "the UN Human Rights Council's announcement of the ‘blacklist’ of business companies is a shameful surrender to the pressures of countries and organizations interested in hurting Israel, even though most countries in the world have refused to join this political pressure campaign."

Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO) secretary general Saeb Erekat welcomed the release of the list and said, “This announcement enhances and consolidates the credibility of the Human Rights Council and international organizations in the face of the fierce attack and the intense pressure that the Trump administration places on these institutions to impede the implementation of its legal and humanitarian mandate entrusted to it by the international community.”