Updated research released by PSC has identified that Local Government Pension Scheme funds continue to hold at least £4.4bn in companies complicit in Israel’s oppression of the Palestinian people.
This includes companies supplying the Israeli military with weapons and military technology used against the civilian Palestinian population, and companies active in Israel’s illegal settlement enterprise. The research, an update of similar research released last year, was carried out though analysis of Freedom of Information Requests, and is made up of both direct and indirect investments held by LGPS funds.
This pressure from scheme members and campaigners has led to East Sussex Pension Fund divesting from Elbit Systems, and the Local Authority Pension Fund Forum, a body made up of a vast majority of LGPS funds in the UK, announcing it would begin engagement with companies cited by the UN as active in Israel’s illegal settlements. However, as PSCs research shows, widespread complicit investment continues.
The research has identified that 48 funds, or over 85% of those PSC analysed, have holdings in companies included in the UN Human Rights Office’s list of 112 business enterprises active in Israel’s illegal settlements in the West Bank. In all stages of compiling the report containing the list the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR) conducted rigorous engagement with companies included, who all continued with their activities sustaining Israel’s settlement enterprise.
In addition, the updated research has found that 93% of LGPS funds analysed have holdings in companies supplying weapons, military technology or components to the Israeli military.
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