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9 de junio | | | | | |

Presentations by Tchenna Maso (Via Campesina Brazil) and Karin Nansen (Friends of the Earth) at side event in Geneva on corporate power concentration

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The actions by transnational corporations against the rights of countries and communities, together with the militarization of the territories and the criminalization of social protests are escalating. A Binding Treaty that forces corporations to comply with human rights principles is urgently needed, according to the representatives of several organizations who participated in a side event, held in parallel to the 35th Session of the Human Rights Council in Geneva.

“Side events” are held at the headquarters of the UNHRC and are part of mobilizations that multiple international networks have been organizing since 2014 in the framework of the Treaty Alliance, aiming to international regulations that “put an end to corporate impunity”.

The member of the Movement of People Affected by Dams of Brazil (MAB), Tchenna Maso, said that the process to dismantle social victories reached in Brazil, by the illegitimate government led by Michel Temer, is in line with the corporate interests it represents. The MAB is member of La Via Campesina Brazil and the Latin American Movement of People Affected by Dams (MAR).

Tchenna condemned the behavior of Samarco company, responsible for the environmental and human catastrophe of Minas Gerais State with the collapse of Fundao and Santarem dams, both located in Bento Rodrigues district, 35 kilometers from Mariana, a year ago.

“The behavior of this company is a great example of corporate impunity”, said Brazilian activist Tchenna Maso of the MAB}}.

At the side event titled “The risks of corporate power concentration to human and peoples´ rights: the need for a Binding Treaty”, Karin Nansen, of Uruguay, chair of Friends of the Earth International, denounced the “escalation of violence” against nature and territory defenders.

“The current international legal framework is not giving an efficient response to this problem” said Nansen during her presentation, advocating for the intergovernmental working group to advance towards strict and binding rules.

“We see how democracy is more and more at risk as corporate power and impunity advance”, said the Chair of Friends of the Earth International at the event held on June 7th.

The speakers included Tchenna and Karin, as well as Manoela Carneiro Roland of the Business and Human Rights Center, the representative of US indigenous peoples mobilized against the Standing Rock pipeline, Wašté Win Young, Abeer Butmeh of PENGON – Friends of the Earth Palestine, Brid Brennan of the Transnational Institute of the Netherlands and Nathalie Rengifo of Corporate Accountability International.

The presentations can be watched here.

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