Hundreds Turn Out To Shut Elbit Down – Arrests Made as Police Move To Silence Protestors

May 11, 2021

  • Emergency action called on May 11th in wake of attacks on Gaza, al-Aqsa atrocities and Sheikh Jarrah ethnic cleansing
  • Hundreds turn out to shut down the UK HQ of Elbit Systems – the arms firm producing the munitions and technologies fuelling war crimes in Palestine
  • In show of solidarity with Palestinian people, demonstrators made clear that war crimes have no support on the streets of London. The action succesfully shut Elbit’s London HQ, preventing access and forcing it to close for the day
  • 3 arrests made as part of heavy-handed police presence and ongoing Met harrassment of activists

3 protestors were arrested during a protest outside Elbit’s HQ which saw hundreds turn out. Palestine Action called for a mass disruption to shut down Elbit’s HQ in Holborn following brutual Israeli assualts on Gaza and Jerusalem.

The mass action was announced to bring Elbit’s facilitation of war crimes to light, to restate our call to end UK complicity in these atrocities, and to shut Elbit’s headquarters down. The demonstration saw over 150 people turn out, with flags, banners, drums, and solidarity, making clear that the machinery of Israel’s murderous occupation has no place on UK soil. A minute’s silence was held for Martyred Gazans at 14:00.

The demonstration saw a diverse crowd – including members of International Jewish Anti-Zionist Network, Jewish Network for Palestine and the Global Women’s Strike-  turn out in solidarity with Palestinians being murdered in Gaza and Jerusalem, taking action to stop Elbit’s business of bloodshed. The police turned out in huge numbers – with over 30 officers, 5 police vans, 3 facial recognition surveillance vans and 2 horses. Police made intermittent arrests and searches throughout the demonstration – before arresting three individuals shortly after 14:30. The reason for arrest was not clear, but indicates the agressive policing decisions taken by the Met in response to conscientious action against Elbit’s war machine. 

This week has seen the forceful removal of Palestinians from their homes, settlers’ open assault of Palestinians in the streets, and the brutalisation of peaceful worshippers in the Al-Asqa mosque – wherein Israeli police used tear gas and baton rounds on civilians, injuring over 300. The days since have seen an escalation of attacks in Gaza, with the latest figures counting 20 Palestinians (including 9 children) killed by indiscriminate IDF rockets.

Palestine Action has called for action to end UK complicity in these atrocities. Our government is aqciescent to ethnic cleansing and war crimes, meanwhile Elbit’s technologies – produced in the UK – play a central role in the horrifying crimes committed in Palestine.

They produce the baton rounds which have claimed eyes and limbs in Jerusalem, and won huge contracts to ‘securitise’ the illegal border walls which run through the city. Their drones comprise 85% of the Israeli stockpile, and are used extensively in all IDF attacks on Gaza having claimed thousands of lives in the past decade, while also surveilling the civilian population. These brutal arms and technologies are produced right here in the UK, across the 10 sites that Elbit has in the country.

While Elbit products are being used to kill children in Gaza and brutalise civilians in Jerusalem, the police are harrassing those who can see Elbit for what they are: murderers. Today’s arrests – for which no clear motive is apparent – stand in stark contrast to the free reign given to Elbit to facilitate and profit from war crimes Elbit enables, for which no charges have yet been forthcoming. 



Palestine Action

Elbit Systems