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Palestine Action smashes Teledyne’s weapons factory

Activists from Palestine Action have broken in to Teledyne Technologies’ weapons plant in Presteigne, Wales. Climbing in through smashed windows, activists began to thoroughly dismantle the factory of the American-owned firm, forcing closure of a site used to supply military hardware to Israel. Activists have taken apart offices, broken computers, and have begun occupation of the roof to ensure that the factory remains inoperable. The group took over the Teledyne factory at 7.30am on Thursday morning, and vow to continue this action for as long as possible to stop the manufacture or shipment of Israel’s drone technologies and military gear.

Teledyne Technologies, and its subsidiary E2V Technologies, hold weapons export licences for both Israel and India, where their surveillance and targeting systems are used in the repression and killing of Palestinian and Kashmiri civilians. Teledyne produces image sensors for military applications, as well as high-resolution surveillance technology for Israel’s illegal apartheid wall. Israel’s armed drone fleet, deployed in successive assaults on Gaza since the 51-day attack in 2014, are also outfitted with Teledyne targeting systems, which enables Israel to precision target children and schools. Teledyne Technologies’ products are therefore directly attributable to the surveillance and murder of thousands of Palestinians.

In today’s action against Teledyne, Palestine Action have broken another link in the chain between British-based weapons manufacturers and the colonisation of Palestine. For over two years, Palestine Action’s campaign has primarily focussed on Elbit Systems – Israel’s largest arms firm – and has seen two of their sites forced to close permanently. But the group are clear: any firm which works to supply of weaponry to Israel will be shut down. This campaign will end British complicity in the colonisation of Palestine – any firm contributing to that will be a target. The group has said:

Britain is now a hostile environment for all companies involved in the brutalisation and murder of Palestinians. Elbit Systems is one such company, but Teledyne Technologies are another major player. They supply surveillance equipment for Israel’s apartheid wall, and targetting systems for their fleet of combat drones. Tackling the imperialist hydra means cutting off all its the heads, so we will shut down each and every company complicit in the ongoing colonisation of Palestine.”

This action and rooftop occupation comes after the group disrupted the techUK Defence Winter Dinner only last night. Five activists entered London’s Landmark Hotel and seized the microphone, calling out attendees, including Elbit Systems, for their culpability in the crimes against humanity committed by Israel. The dinner was attended by British government, civil service, and military leaders, as well as representatives of most major arms firms operating in the country. Elbit likely looked to the event as an opportunity to affirm their relationships and reputation after a string of embarrassing defeats by Palestine Action, these activists had other ideas.

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