Today (December 16), Rohingya victims of Burma’s genocidal operations in Maungdaw, Arakan State, filed an official complaint to the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) on violations of its investment guidelines by Norway’s state-owned Telenor company, demanding an independent investigation into the use of Telenor infrastructure by Burmese security forces to carry out atrocities against Rohingya.
An extraordinary event took place on Thursday (December 12, 2019) in The Hague, the Netherlands. An International Court of Justice (ICJ) panel wound up the first phase of a legal process aimed at determining whether Myanmar committed an act of genocide against the Rohingya ethnic minority. It is the first step toward justice for the Rohingya people: our world’s longest-suffering and most persecuted people.
To the OECD Norway Contact Point:
Complaint Concerning Use of Telenor Tower for Genocide in Rakhine State
Ms. Cathrine Halsaa firstname.lastname@example.org
Ms. Bente Bakken email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org
December 16, 2019
The following complaint outlines serious breaches of OECD Guidelines for Multinational Enterprises (“the OECD Guidelines”) by Telenor and its Myanmar subsidiary, Telenor Myanmar, in relation to its activities in Myanmar’s Rakhine state. Specifically an incident in Alethankyaw, Maungdaw Township in August 2017 where a tower that is part of Telenor’s cellular network was used to aid the military as it carried out crimes against humanity against the local unarmed civilian population during a campaign of genocide. It is the aim of this complaint to have it thoroughly examined by the Norwegian National Contact Point (NCP) under the Specific Instance Procedure of the OECD Guidelines.
As the Norwegian government is the majority owner of Telenor, Norway has a particular obligation to investigate fairly and without bias Telenor’s connection to the killing in Alethankyaw. Many of the major humanitarian and human rights legal treaties that Norway is a signatory of, call on states to make sure that non-state actors adhere to the human rights obligations the treaties contain, including prohibitions on genocide and torture.
We, the Committee Seeking Justice for Alethankyaw, hope that Norway takes these obligations seriously.
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This briefing note focusses on the upcoming hearing between The Gambia and Myanmar on the narrow issue of “provisional measures,” set down for 10-12 December 2019 at the International Court of Justice (ICJ)1 and does not seek to address the wider, substantive, proceedings.