Palestine activists declare victory after Israeli arms firm Elbit Systems ‘abandons London HQ’

Credit: Guy Smallman

The Israeli weapons company Elbit Systems has apparently abandoned its headquarters in London after sustained action by the Palestine Action movement. 

According to Palestine Action, after relentless direct action and a number of arrests it made business inoperable for Elbit forcing the firm to abandoned its office at 77 Kingsway.

Elbit has yet to comment on the matter.

Since 2020, activists have taken action 15 times at the site, disrupting business by blockading, occupying and defacing the property. The campaign culminated in 60 arrests for which activists continue to face trial.

Elbit’s apparent exit in London comes just five months after it shut Elbit Ferranti in Oldham.

Palestine Action said: “We’ve slammed the doors of Elbit’s London HQ shut, as direct action has once again permanently closed an Elbit Systems site in Britain. Thanks to our brave and spirited activists, we are ever closer to the end of Israel’s arms trade in Britain.”

Three members of Palestine Action, including two co-founders, Richard Barnard and Huda Ammori, still face charges of blackmail in response to the campaign demanding Elbit’s eviction.

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“Elbit’s London Headquarters once played an important role in coordinating the firm’s bloodstained network of British operations, but not anymore,” said a spokesperson for Palestine Action. “Palestine Action has yet to reach its two-year anniversary, and already we have permanently shut down two sites belonging to Israel’s largest arms company.

“We will build on the success of this closure and we won’t stop until all eight remaining sites follow suit. It’s a victory for all those who sacrificed their liberty and to all those who supported the movement, but most importantly the Palestinian people. It brings us another step closer to the day Israel’s arms trade is out of Britain for good.”

Elbit Systems is Israel’s largest arms firm. They build weapons include drones, artillery and target acquisition software in Britain, all of which are marketed as “battle-tested” or “combat-proven.”

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