UK Campaign against Carmel-Agrexco Feature Archive
This week activists have responded to an international callout for actions against the import of Valentine's day flowers.
On Saturday activists gathered at Carmel-Agrexco, Middlesex, to picket the main supply point for Israeli imports into the UK.
See Photos And Reports 1| 2| 3|and original press release On Thursday morning a group of fifteen women blockaded the warehouse again to prevent the transport of flowers to British supermarkets Links : Boycott Israeli Goods Campaign | Palestine Solidarity Campaign | Who Profits |
Previous Actions: Carmel Agrexco's Depot Shut Down in Commemoration of the Nakba | Fortress Carmel Agrexco breached by Peace Activists | Video - Carmel Agrexco protest during Camp for Climate Action | Weekend of Action Against Carmel Agrexco | Activists Blockade Carmel-Agrexco's UK Headquarters for the Third Time | International Actions against Israeli Apartheid| Solidarity Actions in the West Bank, Gaza and the UK
On 29th October 2008, the 60th anniversary of massacres in the Palestinian villages of Safsaf, al-Dawayima and Kafr Qasim, British activists were aboard the Dignity which sailed into Gaza. The boat which set sail from Cyprus the day before, was the second succesful attempt by the Free Gaza Movement to break the siege of Gaza, which has been imposed since last year. Carrying a contingent of doctors and medicines ,including cough mixtures which are no longer available in Gaza, the activists are set to meet up with fellow activists who have been in Gaza since the first sailing in August 2008.
In the West Bank, a delegation from the Brighton Tubas Region Friendship and Solidarity Group had arrived in the Tubas Region of the Occupied West Bank a week earlier. Reports sent home from the delegation record incidents such as attacks by Settlers, continued land theft, and enforced water shortages. The group which aims to highlight Israeli war crimes against Palestinians in the region, raise awareness about life under occupation and create practical solidarity links between grassroots organisations in Brighton and Tubas region, is currently assisting with the olive harvest at the village of Al Masra.links:Free Gaza Movement |News from the Brighton-Tubas Friendship and Solidarity Group in the West Bank| Jordan Valley Solidarity| Palestine Solidarity Campaign | International Solidarity Movement in Palestine | Boycott Israeli Goods Campaign | Stop the Wall in Palestine
In the early hours of Saturday morning, activists occupied and shut-down the HQ and only UK freight warehouse of Carmel Agrexco - Israel's largest agricultural exporter from the Occupied Palestinian Territories. The occupation held for over 6 hours until they were forcibly removed at 12 noon.
During the occupation over 10 loading trucks intended for the warehouse were sent away. British supermarkets - accounting for 60% of Carmel-Agrexco's total exports - had some of their orders affected. The Israeli government has a 50% stake in the company. Exports include flowers, avocados and herbs grown in illegal Israeli settlements on occupied Palestinian land.
Previous Actions: Fortress Carmel Agrexco breached by Peace Activists | Video - Carmel Agrexco protest during Camp for Climate Action | Weekend of Action Against Carmel Agrexco | Activists Blockade Carmel-Agrexco's UK Headquarters for the Third Time | International Actions against Israeli Apartheid
The period leading up to Valentine’s day saw actions against Israeli apartheid taking place in the USA, England and Belgium. A week of action had been called against the import of Israeli flowers for Valentine’s Day. The call to action was against Carmel-Agrexco, the 50% state owned Israeli export company, and in support of a boycott of apartheid Israel.
On Friday 9th February Belgian activists blocked trucks at Agrexco’s depot in Liege, On Monday in Hayes, Middlesex, Activists blocked the entrances and exits of Agrexco’s UK headquarters. Some activists opted for another Valentine’s day target, the Israeli diamond trade: In London Architects and Planners for Justice in Palestine and Jews for Boycotting Israeli Goods picketed Lev Leviev’s new store while activists from Adalah in the US targeted Levievs’ New York branch. Leviev, an international diamond merchant, is responsible for developing illegal settlements on Palestinian land near the West Bank Villages of Bil In and Jayouss. His New York store has been targeted for several months by anti-apartheid activists.
The weekend of 10-11 February, 2007, saw two actions against Carmel-Agrexco, the largest exporter of flowers from illegal Israeli settlements in the West Bank. The lead up to Valentine's Day is one of their busiest times as their Middlesex depot delivers a large amount of Israeli flowers to UK supermarkets.
On Saturday, 120 Activists from the Boycott Israeli Goods Campaign blocked the gates of the depot for most of the afternoon. Then, in the early hours of Sunday morning, 13 activists shut the depot down again for several hours by locking themselves to the factory gates.Text of Letter to Carmel Agrexco | Apartheid and Agrexco in the Jordan Valley | War on Want's Report - Profiting from the Occupation
Links: Boycott Israeli Goods | ISM Palestine | Palestine Solidarity Campaign | Stop the Wall in Palestine | Brighton-Tubas Friendship and Solidarity Group
For the second time this year [previous action], Palestine Solidarity activists blockaded Israeli company Carmel Agrexco's UK headquarters in Hayes, Middlesex, in the early morning of 26 Nov 2006 [press release]. The action was part of an ongoing non-violent protest against recurrent breaches of human rights and international law in the occupied territories of Palestine and to highlight Agrexco's illegal activity in court.
The blockaders braved torrential rain for nearly 6 hours, completely stopping all deliveries to and from the depot. A structure was erected from metal fence panels, blocking Agrexco's main gate. Two activists were locked onto the company's vehicle access gate, inside the company grounds, while another two secured the second gate.
Once again, Agrexco made a decision not to prosecute the blocaders for fear of the negative publicity another court case could generate [see previous trial].
Read: Text of letter to Carmel-Agrexco | Report on Carmel's involvement in the Jordan Valley | War on Want's report: Profiting from the Occupation | previous actions: 1 | 2
A number of Palestine Solidarity activists blocaded the UK headquarters of Israeli company Carmel-Agrexco for over 11 hours on 30 August, 2006, to gain ruling on the legality of trading with Israeli settlements [see report]. The purpose of the protest was to expose an Israeli company that is engaging in continuous unlawful and brutal activity by importing fresh produce originating from illegal Israeli settlements in the Occupied Palestinian Territories. Carmel-Agrexco, however, chose to withstand the disruption and not have the blockaders charged with 'aggravated trespass'. At the end of the day only one activist was arrested and subsequently de-arrested.
The method of protest was to construct two large metal triangular cages at each entrance. Protestors secured their necks to the cages by using bicycle D-Locks, with several supporters close at hand. One cage served to totally shut down the exit, and the other caused major disruption at the entrance.
Read: Text of letter to Carmel-Agrexco | Press release from previous trial | Report on Carmel's involvement in the Jordan Valley | War on Want's report: Profiting from the Occupation | previous actions: 1 | 2
As the British government continues to boycott Palestinians by refusing to recognise their democratically elected government, by joining the EU in a blockade of aid and by entertaining Israeli leader Ehud Olmert in London whilst bombs rain down on Gaza, activists around the country have answered a call from the Palestine Solidarity Campaign (PSC) and the Boycott Israeli Goods Campaign (BIG) to join a day of boycott action against Israeli apartheid.
During the day of action on Saturday, 24th June, pickets and demonstrations took place at stores selling Israeli products across the UK: in Liverpool, Brighton, Camden, Hackney, Islington, Southport, Cardiff, Darlington, Brixton, Oxford, Nottingham, Birmingham, Exeter, Halifax, Brent, Durham, Sheffield and Manchester. Concerned individuals took part in creative actions to persuade the public not to buy Israeli goods and demand that retailers do not stock them.
In Brighton campaigners picketed Waitrose calling on the corporation to adhere to its ethical buying policy by not buying goods from apartheid Israel. Another picket was held outside a highstreet store selling CATerpillar goods, who have a contract with the Israeli military for the supply of military bulldozers used in illegal demolitions of Palestinian homes. In the West Midlands activists drove a replica CATerpillar bulldozer through the high street as a creative way of highlighting the way in which CATerpillar fuels the occupation. Across London activist picketed supermarkets selling Israeli goods and delivered letters to store managers informing them of the boycott.
The actions today were part of a concerted campaign calling for boycott, divestment and sanctions against apartheid Israel. Prevous actions and campaigns include:
Agrexco: Corporate Complicity in the Ethnic Cleansing of the Jordan Valley | Letting Apartheid Bloom | The Uxbridge Seven: Day One | Day Two | Seven Blockaders Acquitted
Caterpillar: Caterpillar Manchester Protest 2005 | Anniversary of Rachel Corries' Death | Film: Caterkiller Shut Down | Anti Caterpillar Motorcade | Rhythms of Resistance Anti Cat Shoes Protest | Caterpillar Trade Fair Action | Caterkiller Awarded Housewrecker of the Year | ESF Florence Action
Supermarket protests: Boycott Van | Marks and Spencers Stencilled | Repression of M&S Protesters
Academic boycott: AUT Boycott | NAFTHE Boycott | CUPE Ontario | COSATU (South Africa).
Sporting boycott campaigns include Stop Arsenal supporting Israeli Apartheid | Scotland Pitch Invasions | Free Jerusalem-Stop Connex and Alstrom.