£1million Damage At Instro Precision: Elbit’s Weapons Factory Out of Action

Jun 18, 2024

Palestine Action’s decommissioning of Elbit Systems’ electro-optics weapons sights factory in Kent has left the ‘Instro Precision’ site immobilised, unable to produce weapons parts for export to Israel. After tens of activists stormed the premises – bypassing security guards and cutting through three layers of wire fence – 7 activists made it inside the factory itself, laying waste to the weapons of war being produced inside [1].

During their 36 hour detention, before their release under strict bail conditions, police interrogators put it to the 7 arrested that over £1,000,000 of damage was caused in their few hours inside the factory. Good, say Palestine Action. Fewer sniper sights manufactured at Instro Precision means fewer guns for Israel’s genocide in Gaza. Destroying cables on the outside of the factory, and wrecking machinery, computer technology, and parts being produced for Instro’s product line, the action sought to – and has successfully – put the site out of action.

In a five year period, Instro Precision was granted over 50 weapons export licenses for sale of arms for military end-use in Israel, mostly of the ‘ML5’ category – weapons sight and target acquisition products [2]. Many of these are the weapons sights ‘likely to be used in ground operations in Gaza’ [3] by Israeli ground troops. In 2019, an Elbit press release stated that thousands of XACT th64 and XACT th65 weapons sights had been delivered to the Israeli military [4], for use by “marksmen of both Infantry and Special Operation Forces”.

Besides products for snipers and infantry, Instro also manufactures sights and components for vehicular mounting, including the SpectroXR system fitted to Israel’s ‘Skylark‘ drones [5]. Instro products the ‘COAPS’ (Commander Open Architecture Panoramic Sight) [5], which has been integrated with Main Battle Tanks and Armoured Fighting Vehicles with “hunter-killer capabilities”, in use by the Israeli military [6].

[1] https://caat.org.uk/app/uploads/2023/11/Fact-sheet-re-Gaza-2023-11-14.pdf
[2] caat.org.uk/data/exports-uk/licence-list?region=Israel&company=Elbit+Systems
[3] caat.org.uk/app/uploads/2023/11/Fact-sheet-re-Gaza-2023-11-14.pdf
[4] elbitsystems.com/pr-new/elbit-systems-xact-weapon-sights-enter-operational-service-with-the-idf/
[5] https://instro.com/products/target-acquisition-and-joint-fires/spectro-xr/
[6] instro.com/products/vehicle-systems/coaps/
[7] www.sibat.mod.gov.il/Industries/Directory/Documents/Defense%20Directory%202015_16.pdf