The International Corporate Accountability Roundtable (ICAR), Amnesty International, and the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR) are pleased to announce their intention to collaborate on research and consultation activities relating to the legal and practical challenges faced by domestic prosecution authorities in cases of allegations of business involvement in severe human rights abuses.
In November 2014, pursuant to its mandate from the Human Rights Council under Resolution 26/22, OHCHR has launched a programme of work targeted at enhancing accountability and access to remedy, the aim of which is to develop reliable and credible guidance for States as to how they can contribute to a fairer and more effective system of domestic law remedies, particularly in cases of gross human rights abuses (the “OHCHR Project”). This programme of work comprises six work-streams selected because of their strategic value and potential to improve accountability from a practical, victim-centered perspective. Project 6 of this initiative relates to the legal and practical challenges faced by domestic prosecution authorities in relation to cases of allegations of business involvement in gross human rights abuses.
On 26 February 2014, ICAR and Amnesty International launched a joint project entitled “Commerce, Crime and Human Rights: Closing the Prosecution Gaps” which seeks to “develop recommendations for State practice in addressing … prosecution gaps for corporate crimes” (“the ICAR/Amnesty Project”). This project will result in of a set of principles for State action, endorsed by leading jurists and prosecutors.
In light of the similarity between these two projects, OHCHR, ICAR, and Amnesty International wish to explore ways to collaborate to make the best use of existing resources and know-how, to improve the efficiency and effectiveness of ongoing research, to reduce the likely burden on contributors to these projects and to avoid unnecessary duplication of effort. The scope of the collaboration is limited to information-gathering and consultations with stakeholders, and will not result in joint recommendations or outcomes.