Palestine activists occupy Leicester factory of Israeli-owned defence firm
search

The latest Jewish News

Read this week’s digital edition

Click Here

Palestine activists occupy Leicester factory of Israeli-owned defence firm

Campaigners chained the gates shut and scaled the roof of the UAV Tactical Systems factory, chanting 'Free Palestine' and 'Shut Elbit Down'

Lee Harpin is the Jewish News's political editor

Credit: Pal Action Twitter
Credit: Pal Action Twitter

Pro-Palestinian protestors have occupied a factory in Leicester claiming they were disrupting “production of arms and military technology” for Israel.

Supporters of the Palestine Action group chained the gates shut and scaled the roof of the UAV Tactical Systems factory in the Meridian Business Park in Braunstone Town.

Protestors were seen on the roof holding Palestinian flags and chanting chanting “Free Palestine” and Shut Elbit Down”.

They refused to leave the site with emergency services on the scene.

UAV is a subsidiary of Elbit Systems, an Israeli-based defence electronics company, and Thales, a French aerospace company.

The fire service has said they have been at the site all night assisting police.

A Leicestershire Fire and Rescue Service spokeswoman said: “We have been at the Meridian Business park through the night assisting the police.

“We have an aerial ladder platform there. It is believed there are still people on the roof and have been all night.”

Credit: Pal Action Twitter

A statement from Leicestershire Police said: “Officers are this evening (Wednesday) continuing to negotiate with protesters on the roof of a building at the Meridian Business Park.

“Shortly after 5.30am today, a report was received that a group had climbed onto the roof of a building.

“Both groups remain at the site and specially-trained officers are continuing to maintain an open dialogue with them.

“A further group later made their way to the site and police are facilitating their right to peaceful protest on the ground.”

Palestine Action allege that parts being made in Leicester are being used in military tech being used in the conflict in Israel and Gaza.

They said: “Today’s action shows that it is entirely within our power to stop the production of machinery.

“The past week has shown the relentless death and destruction that Israeli forces can and will inflict.

“It is the duty of anyone who has been rightly appalled by these atrocities to stand up and take action.”

Palestine Action has previously targeted factories in Greater Manchester, Staffordshire and Elbit’s headquarters in Bristol.

Jewish News has contacted UAV for comment

Support your Jewish community. Support your Jewish News

Thank you for helping to make Jewish News the leading source of news and opinion for the UK Jewish community. Today we're asking for your invaluable help to continue putting our community first in everything we do.

Unlike other Jewish media, we do not charge for content. That won’t change. Because we are free, we rely on advertising to cover our costs. This vital lifeline, which has dropped in recent years, has fallen further due to coronavirus.

For as little as £5 a month you can help sustain the vital work we do in celebrating and standing up for Jewish life in Britain.

Jewish News holds our community together and keeps us connected. Like a synagogue, it’s where people turn to feel part of something bigger. It also proudly shows the rest of Britain the vibrancy and rich culture of modern Jewish life.

You can make a quick and easy one-off or monthly contribution of £5, £10, £20 or any other sum you’re comfortable with.

100% of your donation will help us continue celebrating our community, in all its dynamic diversity...

Engaging

Being a community platform means so much more than producing a newspaper and website. One of our proudest roles is media partnering with our invaluable charities to amplify the outstanding work they do to help us all.

Celebrating

There’s no shortage of oys in the world but Jewish News takes every opportunity to celebrate the joys too, through projects like Night of Heroes, 40 Under 40 and other compelling countdowns that make the community kvell with pride.

Pioneering

In the first collaboration between media outlets from different faiths, Jewish News worked with British Muslim TV and Church Times to produce a list of young activists leading the way on interfaith understanding.

Campaigning

Royal Mail issued a stamp honouring Holocaust hero Sir Nicholas Winton after a Jewish News campaign attracted more than 100,000 backers. Jewish Newsalso produces special editions of the paper highlighting pressing issues including mental health and Holocaust remembrance.

Easy access

In an age when news is readily accessible, Jewish News provides high-quality content free online and offline, removing any financial barriers to connecting people.

Voice of our community to wider society

The Jewish News team regularly appears on TV, radio and on the pages of the national press to comment on stories about the Jewish community. Easy access to the paper on the streets of London also means Jewish News provides an invaluable window into the community for the country at large.

We hope you agree all this is worth preserving.

read more:
comments