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Activists who shut down Israeli arms factory released on bail

EIGHT activists who were arrested for blockading an Israeli arms factory in Oldham on Monday, allegedly causing £20,000 worth of damage, have been released on bail. 

The activists from Palestine Action and Extinction Rebellion shut down the factory in Greater Manchester by locking on to three gates and clambering onto the roof.

The group smashed windows and daubed the building, owned by Israel’s largest private arms firm Elbit Systems, in red paint, to oppose “an economy based on devastation, occupation and war.”

Elbit Systems supplies the Israeli army with 85 per cent of its drone fleet, and markets its weapons as “battle-tested” after their use by the Israeli military in Gaza. 

Police said the activists were arrested on suspicion of criminal damage and aggravated trespass. The eight were later released from custody on bail under investigation on Tuesday afternoon.

In the wake of the protest, the group’s Facebook page was removed. 

In response the group accused Facebook of discriminating against Palestinian human rights activism, pointing out that the Israeli army’s page remains up “even though their murderous actions against the Palestinians help ‘test’ and develop Elbit weapons.”

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