Elbit in Bristol to face further action over its arms factories

  • Post last modified:March 22, 2024
  • Reading time:4 mins read

On Saturday 23 March, Palestine campaigners will gather outside the new Elbit Horizon H2 factory in Bristol to protest against the company’s complicity in the genocide currently ongoing in Gaza.

Elbit: complicit in genocide

Elbit Systems UK is owned by Israel’s largest weapons firm, which markets its weaponry as “battle-tested” after they’re developed through assaults on the Palestinian people.

The Israeli weapons maker manufactures 85% of Israel’s military drone fleet and land-based equipment, as well as missiles, bombs and bullets. Elbit’s CEO Bazhalel Machlis, who sits on the board of Elbit Systems UK, boasted of how the Israeli military has thanked the company for their “crucial” services during the ongoing genocide in Gaza.

Since 7 October, Israel has killed over 31,000 Palestinians, injured over 73,000, and displaced the vast majority of Gaza.

In Bristol, as Campaign Against Arms Trade (CAAT) wrote:

This ‘research, development and manufacturing hub for high technology solutions’ was opened in July 2023 by the Israeli ambassador, Tzipi Hotovely, and local Tory MP Jack Lopresti. It is the second Elbit Systems facility in Bristol, the other being at 600 Aztec West

As the Canary recently reported, Palestine Action is currently camping outside Elbit’s HQ at 600 Aztec West in Bristol.

Bristol taking action

Now, Bristol Palestine Alliance (BPA) has organised a day of action.

People can gather from 12:30pm at Elbit’s factory. The full address is Belvedere Close (off Bolingbroke Way) Little Stoke, Bristol BS34 6FE:

The protest will run as follows:

12.30pm: workshop – people will make bunting from children’s clothes, write names-of-the-dead onto labels, and assemble “baby bundles” resembling bodies of the dead in Gaza. Children will also be chalking slogans and pictures on the tarmac at the entrance of the factory.

1pm: rally – including speakers: Rowland Dye – Palestinian Rights Campaigner; Nora el Gohary – Local Bristolian originally from Egypt; Mike Jempson – Journalist & Co Founder of the Mediawise Trust; Diana Slim – Hospital doctor; Peter Oswald – Poet and dramatist from “Naming the Dead”; Aisha Deeney – School pupil, activist; Professor Ron Rendel – Jewish American activist for Palestinian Rights; Susie Luger – Campaigner for Palestinian rights; Zoe Goodman – Independent Councillor.

In addition to the above, there will be a message of support from Ronnie Barkan – who recently stood trial as part of the Elbit-7 for direct action at the Aztec West Elbit site, and a message of support from Andrew Feinstein, arms trade expert and Jewish member of the post-Apartheid ANC government in South Africa.

2pm: photos – the attending crowd will pose for a group photo holding a giant horizontal “STOP ARMING ISRAEL” banner across the entrance of the factory. People will also hold up baby-bundles, children’s clothes bunting, name-labels, etc.

2.15pm: an “act of defiance” – crowd will defy security guards and march forward towards the factory gates to lay down baby-bundles, plus to hang children’s clothes bunting & name-labels onto the gates and the fence.

2.30pm “We Shall Overcome” – The crowd will sing the 1960’s Civil Rights anthem.

Featured image via Bristol Palestine Alliance

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