Statement | 17-06-2014
Global Governance Monitoring and Accountability

FIAN asks for instrument to recognize primacy of human rights

FIAN International points out the asymmetries existing between the law applicable to TNCs and those protecting human rights, and urges a legally binding framework for the realization of human rights

In two oral statements to the 26th Session of the Human Rights Council in Geneva, FIAN reiterates its advocacy for the creation of an open-ended intergovernmental working group to draft a legally binding international instrument. This legally binding framework would allow tackling human rights violations committed by Transnational Corporations (TNCs), taking into account the gender perspective and addressing discriminatory practices and impacts of companies' activities on the rights to food of the most vulnerable people, including women, girls and peasants.

The statements bring up first the concerns to the lack of remedies for the victims of violations caused directly or with the complicity of companies -especially on women's right to food, nutrition and health. FIAN calls on the Human Rights Council to continue supporting the work of the Intergovernmental Working Group on the rights of peasants and other people living in rural areas, by extending its mandate, and to ensure that gender balance and women rights are fully included in the discussions and duly in the declaration.

To achieve this, FIAN International asks the Council to take clear steps towards the adoption of a legally binding instrument on TNCs and human rights that:

  • affirms the applicability of human rights obligations to the operations of transnational corporations;
  • requires States Parties to monitor and regulate the operations of business enterprises under their jurisdiction;
  • provides for the legal liability for business enterprises for acts or omissions that infringe human rights;
  • provides for access to an effective remedy by any State concerned; and
  • provides for an international monitoring and accountability mechanism.

Moreover, FIAN requests an open and transparent public debate with states that puts the rights holders and, specially, the most vulnerable communities at the centre for the debate, recognizing the primacy of human rights.

See below for more information and to read both oral statements

Side event on June 19, 2014: 'Why a Treaty on Human Rights and TNCs and other Businesses'