Coalition says Hilton violates UN principles that businesses should ‘respect the protection of internationally proclaimed human rights’ and ‘make sure that they are not complicit in human rights abuses’
(WASHINGTON, D.C., 9/21/21) – The #BoycottHilton Coalition, made up of more than 40 American and international organizations, today called on the UN Global Compact to begin the process of removing Hilton Worldwide (NYSE: HLT) as a participant over that corporation’s violations of its principles by entering into an agreement – one that it could terminate – to license the construction of a Hampton Hotel on the site of a bulldozed mosque in the Uyghur region of China.
CLICK HERE: Read #BoycottHilton’s Letter to the United Nations
UN Global Compact, a special initiative of the UN Secretary-General, is “a call to companies everywhere to align their operations and strategies with Ten Principles in the areas of human rights, labour, environment and anti-corruption.” It has more than 13,000 companies and 3,000 non-business signatories in more than 160 countries.
In a letter to UN Secretary General António Guterres and UN Global Compact CEO & Executive Director Sanda Ojiambo, the #BoycottHilton Coalition wrote that Hilton Worldwide is in violation of the UN Global Compact principles on human rights.
The coalition’s letter stated in part:
“As you know, the first two principles of the UN Global Compact relate to the importance of corporate support for human rights:
“’Principle 1: Businesses should support and respect the protection of internationally proclaimed human rights; and Principle 2: make sure that they are not complicit in human rights abuses.’
“By first agreeing to license a hotel on the site of a bulldozed Uyghur mosque in China, and by refusing to drop that licensing agreement despite widespread condemnation of its actions, Hilton Worldwide is clearly in violation of United Nations Global Compact principles.
“Hilton Worldwide is both failing to protect internationally proclaimed human rights and is complicit in human rights abuses.
“We therefore urge you to immediately begin the process required to drop Hilton Worldwide as a participant in the United Nations Global Compact.
“By de-listing Hilton Worldwide from the United Nations Global Compact, the United Nations will establish the precedent that companies which aid in the coverup of genocide are not immune to repercussions.”
While Hilton Worldwide has responded by unapologetically taking no responsibility citing its corporate franchise model has tied its hands, the coalition notes that the hotel chain could terminate its franchise agreement with Huan Peng Hotel Management for “adversely reflect[ing] upon or affect[ing] in any manner the reputation, goodwill, or business” of the hotel.
Hilton Worldwide simply chooses to prioritize profits over being complicit in China’s genocide and cultural erasure of Uyghur Muslims and other Turkic minorities.
The coalition also noted that when Hilton Worldwide joined the UN Global Compact in 2012, it committed to “making the Global Compact and its principles part of the strategy, culture and day-to-day operations of our company.”
“Hilton’s plan to put its logo on the site of a bulldozed Uyghur mosque is like a green light for the Chinese government’s genocide. Even our mosques are being erased from the face of the earth,” said Omer Kanat, executive director of the Uyghur Human Rights Project. “Hilton can’t be allowed to use the UN Global Compact to whitewash complicity. Hilton is disqualifying itself from the Compact’s commitment to respect human rights everywhere.”
Founder and Executive Director of Campaign for Uyghurs Rushan Abbas said: “We applaud CAIR for taking the appropriate action to hold Hilton accountable for its indefensible decision to allow its name to be attached to a hotel built on the site of a demolished Uyghur mosque. As active genocide continues, it is unimaginable that any corporation could continue with such blatant disregard for the values of humanity.”
Last week, the coalition held a news conference outside The Capital Hilton in Washington, D.C., to announce a worldwide boycott of Hilton Worldwide.
Full Video: CAIR, Coalition Announce Boycott of Hilton Over Hotel on Site of Uyghur Mosque in China
PHOTOS: CAIR, 40+ Coalition Partners Announce Global Boycott of Hilton Hotels Over Plan to Build Hotel on Site of Demolished Uyghur Mosque in China
The coalition also launched a Change.org petition drive asking signatories to take a pledge “to join the global boycott of ALL Hilton-owned hotels until the company cancels its plan to establish a hotel on the site of a bulldozed Uyghur mosque in China.”
On September 8, the coalition delivered a letter to Hilton headquarters in Virginia giving the corporation one week to end the agreement to license the construction of a Hampton Hotel on the site of a bulldozed mosque in the Uyghur region of China or face a global boycott.
Video: CAIR, Coalition Partners Give Hilton One Week to Cancel Hotel on Bulldozed Uyghur Mosque in China or Face Global Boycott
Organizations in the #BoycottHilton Coalition include:
- Uyghur Human Rights Project
- World Uyghur Congress
- Campaign for Uyghurs
- Free Uyghur Now
- Justice for All
- Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR)
- U.S. Council of Muslim Organizations (USCMO)
- American Muslim Alliance (AMA)
- American Muslim for Palestine (AMP)
- Baitulmaal for Relief and Development
- Burmese Rohingya Association of North America (BRANA)
- Council of Islamic Organizations of Greater Chicago (CIOGC)
- Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR)
- Dar Alhijrah Islamic Center
- Downtown Islamic Center – Chicago (DIC)
- Helping Hand for Relief and Development (HHRD)
- International Institute of Islamic Thought (IIIT)
- Islamic Association of North America (IANA)
- Islamic Center of Chicago Western Suburbs (ICW)
- Islamic Center of Detroit (ICD)
- Islamic Community Center of Illinois (ICCI)
- Islamic Center of Naperville (ICN)
- Islamic Circle of North America (ICNA)
- Islamic Leadership Council of New York
- Islamic Shura Council of Southern California (ISCSC)
- Mercy Without Limits (MWL)
- Mosque Foundation (MF)
- The Mosque Cares (Ministry of Imam W. D. Mohammed)
- Muslim American Society (MAS)
- Muslim Legal Fund of America (MLFA)
- Muslim Ummah of North America (MUNA)
- Muslim Forum of the Pacific Northwest (MFPNW)
- New York Majlis Ashura
- North America Imams Federation (NAIF)
- Together We Serve (TWS)
- United Muslim Relief (UMR)
- United Hands Relief (UHR)
Justice and Liberties for All Committee (France)
Muslim Council of Britain (England)
Belgium Uyghur Association (Belgium)
The Telegraph revealed plans for the project in June.
CAIR had called on Hilton Worldwide to drop licensing agreement to build a Hampton Hotel on the site of the bulldozed mosque in the city of Hotan, China, but company officials have not responded to that demand.
In July, CAIR applauded the chairs of the bipartisan and bicameral Congressional-Executive Commission on China calling on Hilton Worldwide President and CEO Christopher Nassetta to cancel the agreement to license the construction. CAIR also welcomed the Senate passage of the Uyghur Forced Labor Prevention Act.
SEE: CAIR Welcomes Congressional Commission on China Calling on Hilton to Drop Plan to License Hotel on Site of Demolished Uyghur Mosque
In June, Amnesty International released a report describing China’s abuse of its Uyghur Muslim minority as a “dystopian hellscape.”
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