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Leeds Uni divests from arms trade with Israel

LEEDS has become the first university in Britain to divest from companies involved in arms trade with Israel.

Palestine solidarity activists hailed the decision yesterday and hoped other British universities would follow Leeds’s example.

They said the university had withdrawn “indirect holdings” in Airbus, United Technologies and Keyence, which trade with Israel, including deals linked to arms. The holdings involved around £1 million.

Leeds Palestine Solidarity Campaign co-president Evie Russell-Cohen said: “This is a massive success. We hope that it will only be the beginning of a wave change across UK universities.”

The university sought to downplay the decision, saying that divestment involving three companies was based on “a climate active strategy,” but did not explain what that was.

It said in a statement: “The university adopted a climate active strategy in May this year.

"Implementation of that strategy triggered the sale of the university’s indirect holdings in Airbus, United Technologies and Keyence.”

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