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Demonstrators outside the recent London Docklands arms fair © Gill Knight

Demonstrators outside the recent London Docklands arms fair © Gill Knight

Stop arming Israel: public meeting against the arms trade

Jessie Normanschild of Campaign Against the Arms Trade, will be speaking in Hastings on Thursday 29 October at 7pm in the White Rock Hotel. With many others who took time off from work, study and daily lives she recently protested at the London Docklands arms fair. It is one of the largest in the world and featured 1,500 exhibitors. It was disrupted by hundreds of imaginative campaigners – but the arms trade continues.

The focus of the meeting, organised by Hastings Palestine Solidarity Campaign, is ‘stop arming Israel’. The UK approved £7 million worth of military licences to Israel during the six months leading up to the recent bombing of Gaza, in summer 2014. Over 2,130 Palestinians, including more than 520 children were killed by Israeli forces. The weapons sold to the Israeli government included components for drones, combat aircraft, targeting equipment and weapon sights. Companies based in Britain including Elbit systems, BAE systems and G4S actively support the Israeli regime.

UK government rules are supposed to prevent arms sales:

  • Where there is a clear risk of the equipment being used for “internal repression”;
  • Where the export would “provoke or prolong armed conflicts or aggravate existing tensions or conflicts”; and
  • Where there is a “clear risk that the intended recipient would use the proposed export aggressively against another country, or to assert by force a territorial claim.”
  • And should take into account the buyer country’s “respect for international law”.

If these government guidelines were fairly applied, the result would be an end to arms exports to Israel. But this has not happened.

Ironically, the UK also spends millions of pounds each year on purchasing ‘battle-tested’ weapons from Israeli arms companies making the government complicit in Israel’s continuing violations of human rights and international law. No wonder that Nobel Peace laureate Archbishop Desmond Tutu has backed the call for an international military embargo against Israel.

We need to keep up the pressure until the multi-million arms trade between the UK and Israeli has finished and the illegal occupation of Palestine is over.

Come and hear what we can do!

Thursday 29 October 7 pm
White Rock Hotel (opposite pier)
Hastings TN34 1JU

Further information: Hastings Palestine Solidarity Campaign
Or facebook: Hastings-Palestine-Solidarity-Campaign

Posted 18:08 Monday, Oct 19, 2015 In: Campaigns

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