Corporate culpability is hard to avoid in Myanmar

“The systematic violence and repression in Myanmar, quite frankly, is of such a nature that any corporations doing business there do put their executives and staff at risk of becoming accessories to Genocide, crimes against humanity, and gross abuses of human rights.  And it should be noted that there is no statute of limitations on these crimes; prosecution could occur years, even decades after the fact, once investigators have access to more complete information.

The ethnic cleansing of the Rohingya has been clearly linked to economic and business interests, land grabs with the intention of investment, and the exploitation of natural resources.  This creates a very murky situation for multinational corporations, legally.  If they are found to profit from the land-clearing operations of the Myanmar military, and the displacement of thousands of people; they may well be liable for prosecution.  When the overriding motive for the atrocities is essentially economic, it could become extremely dangerous for corporations to cooperate in any way with the regime, as they will inevitably be connected (potentially causally connected) to the regime’s crimes.”

In this blogpost, Shahid points out the situation that Unilever now finds itself in, having already been caught up in an incident where its local affiliates had previously included ‘969’ messages in its marketing, the 969 group infamous for its involvement in inciting the violence against the Rohingya, and he encourages Unilever to take a much more assertive stand against the genocide.

Link: Corporate culpability is hard to avoid in Myanmar

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