On Monday, hundreds of campaigners joined the ‘Block the Factory’ mass actions in Staffordshire and Kent to halt production for the day of drone engines by Israel’s biggest arms company, Elbit Systems, and to send solidarity to the Palestinian struggle.
There were a number of arrests and London Palestine Action has released the following statement, praising the support provided by Green and Black Cross legal observers and calling for witness statements:
The outrageous policing of the protest by Staffordshire Police, who had recently been on protest policing training and seemed determined to try out new violent tactics, means that around 20 people were arrested.
If you were arrested: the wonderful Green and Black Cross (GBC) legal support group are helping to coordinate a joint effort to support those who were arrested. If you were arrested, please make sure that GBC have your contact details by ringing them on 07946 541 511 or emailing firstname.lastname@example.org.
If you think your friend was arrested: if you are still waiting to find out about a friend or loved one, GBC may be able to help.
If you saw an arrest / events just before an arrest: please write up your observations of events as soon as possible for future legal reference, following GBC’s guidelines.
If you saw police violence: if you witnessed specific incidents of police violence that you think even the legal system could consider an “unreasonable” use of force, please also write a witness account.
If you were injured by police: if you suffered injuries from the police, please write a statement of what happened, and photograph any visible injuries.
If you took pictures or filmed on the day: please be cautious about sharing images online that may help the police with evidence to support their charges, but if your images show events preceding arrest or police violence they may be useful. Defendants may request images and film from specific times, areas or events – we will pass on any of these requests.
A huge thank you to the amazing GBC for their incredible support.
Massive solidarity to all those arrested and to the amazing people who camped out at police stations across Staffordshire to greet and support people when they were released. You are our heroes.