Palestine Action Spray the Foreign Office Red on Nakba Day

May 15, 2023

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Palestine Action sprayed the Foreign Office with blood-red paint on the 75th anniversary of the Nakba, the beginning of the ethnic cleansing of the Palestinian people. The red paint from repurposed fire extinguishers symbolises British complicity in the spilling of Palestinian blood over the past century.

The Nakba (translated as ‘The Catastrophe’) commemorates the beginning of the ethnic cleansing of Palestinians, in which Britain played a central role. After signing away the Palestinian homeland in 1917’s Balfour declaration [1], the British empire colonised the land through its Mandate of Palestine [2]. Through a campaign of suppression, including arrests, killings and sexual violence amongst other war crimes [3], Britain created the conditions that made the ongoing Nakba possible [4, 5]. 

The Nakba saw Zionist militias, armed and trained by the British, expel over 750,000 Palestinians from their homeland, over 500 towns and villages destroyed, and over 13,000 massacred including entire families [6]. 

This process of ethnic cleansing continues to this day, with Palestinians suffering violence and dispossession from the colonial Israeli state [7]. Every successive British government in the past century has facilitated this violence. The ongoing Nakba allows Israel’s arms trade, including Elbit Systems, Palestine Action’s primary target, to use the captive population of Palestine as test subjects for their weapons. The actions today are taken with the purpose of dismantling British complicity [8]. 

The Foreign Office is one of several sites Palestine Action have struck today. In Newcastle, activists occupied the roof of Pearson Engineering, a firm recently acquired by the Israeli state-owned weapons company Rafael, responsible for the manufacture of guided missiles and other military equipment attributable for vast numbers of Palestinian deaths [9]. Activists also spray painted Nakba75 messages in Leicester, on the 15th day of the Palestine Action ‘siege’ of the Elbit Leicester factory [10].


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Palestine Action is a direct-action network of groups and individuals formed with the mandate of taking action against the sites of Elbit Systems and other companies complicit in Israeli apartheid, calling for all such sites to be shut down.