Palestine Action Shuts Down Second Israeli Arms Factory in the Midlands in a Week

May 25, 2021 | 2 comments

  • This morning, Palestine Action scaled the factory of Elbit’s ‘Elite KL’ in Tamworth, which produces military technology & hardware for Israel’s tanks and other military vehicles.
  • Activists scaled the roof at 4.30am, forcing the site to close and causing further disruption to Israel’s arms production in the UK. 
  • Activists sprayed blood-red paint across the front of the factory, to symbolise the blood shed by Elbit’s weapons in Palestine and across the world.
  • Action follows the longest Palestine Action site occupation yet, with Elbit-Thales’ UAV Tactical Systems drone factory in Leicester having been shut for 6 days. 

Palestine Action have scaled and occupied the roof of Elbit’s factory in Tamworth, Staffordshire. Activists have sprayed blood-red paint across the building, as a symbol of blood shed by Elbit’s weaponry. The occupation has forced the site to close, once again breaking Elbit’s production chain in the UK. 

The site, run under the Elite KL brand and working in partnership with its sister brand Elbit-Kinetics, manufactures the computer systems, hardware, and essential components for Israel’s Merkava 4 battle tank. The tank has been used extensively in Israeli atrocities committed in Gaza, including Operation Cast Lead and Operation Protective Edge, wherein Gazans were massacred in their thousands. Elite KL also manufacture a number of additional products such as military vests. 

The occupation of the Tamworth site follows the longest continuous occupation yet undertaken by Palestine Action, with the drone factory of Elbit-Thales UAV Tactical Systems in Leicester having been shut down for 6 consecutive days. The action received immense support and solidarity from local communities, who turned out in their hundreds over the week of occupation. This culminated in over 600 supporters chaining gates, erecting barricades and blocking the removal of detainees for over 6 hours last night. 
Elbit Systems, Israel’s largest arms manufacturer, has 10 sites in the UK, including factories and offices. The company markets its weapons as “battle-tested” on Palestinian civilians in Gaza and uses this as a lucrative “selling point” to encourage oppressive regimes across the world to purchase its hardware. 

A spokesperson from Palestine Action said: 

The collective power and solidarity of people in Britain continues to grow in their opposition to the British state’s and police’s complicity in protecting Israel’s largest arms manufacturer that profits from war crimes, ethnic cleansing and murder globally. For the sake of the protection of life and Human Rights, direct-action against Elbit Systems is a moral duty. Palestine Action will not stop until we shut Elbit down for good.”

Over the course of the last ten months, Palestine Action has achieved one of the longest and most sustained direct-action campaigns against an arms company this country has seen. Through rooftop and ground occupations, blocking site entrances and property damage, these actions have cost Elbit  millions of pounds in losses. 

For rolling updates on the actions in Leicester and Tamworth please check the Palestine Action Twitter account

Palestine Action
Palestine Action is a direct-action network of groups and individuals formed with the mandate of taking direct action against Elbit Systems’ UK locations at grassroots level, calling for them all to be shut down and for the British government to end its complicity in Israeli apartheid.

Coverage of the occupation of Elbit’s Leicester site:

Previous Palestine Action occupations and direct actions:

Elbit Systems
Role of Elbit drone in killing of four children paying on Gaza beach in 2014:
More on the death and destruction inflicted by Elbit’s drones upon Gaza:
Elbit surveillance technology for Israel’s apartheid wall:
UK Ministry of Defence signs £102 million contract with Elbit Systems UK for “sensor-to-shoot” system:
Israel kills over 200 in Gaza, including 59 children
Elbit Systems and Airbus drones tested on Palestinians contracted by EU border agency
 Elbit technology used in US/Mexico border to surveill indigenous reservation