Stop the War Lewisham boycott Barclays in Lewisham over arms trade claims

The protesters entered the building in Lewisham

The protesters entered the building in Lewisham

First published in News
Last updated
News Shopper: Photograph of the Author by , reporter

Protesters from Stop the War Lewisham boycotted a high street bank on Saturday.

In a YouTube video posted by the group, more than 15 radicals holding ‘freedom for Palestine’ and ‘stop the siege’ signs entered the bank and handed out flyers to customers.

The group, who refused to leave the bank, have claimed they targeted Barclays at the weekend because they have a history of supporting the arms trade in Palestine.

A spokesperson from Stop the War Lewisham said: “Children are dying because of the trade Barclays are supporting. All we want is peace for Palestine.”

In a statement, Barclays have said: “Allegations that Barclays is an investor in the defence industry are simply untrue.

“These allegations may stem from our historic ownership of a business formerly called BGI (Barclays Global Investors), an asset manager which did have significant investment positions in defence companies.

“Barclays sold this company in 2009, and has no on-going interest, financial or otherwise, in BGI.”

The group were told to leave the building by police and then continued their protest outside the branch.

Click below to watch the full video.

Comments (7)

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2:56pm Wed 20 Aug 14

SidcupResident says...

I wonder if all the students and 'useful idiots' waving Socialist Worker Party banners are aware of their policy to want to scrap the age of consent (legalise pedophilia).

Shame they're not as vocal in condemning the actions of ISIL (Islamic State) in Iraq and Syria.

I'd be interested to know why the government still provides funding and support for extreme-left groups such as these and the UAF?...
I wonder if all the students and 'useful idiots' waving Socialist Worker Party banners are aware of their policy to want to scrap the age of consent (legalise pedophilia). Shame they're not as vocal in condemning the actions of ISIL (Islamic State) in Iraq and Syria. I'd be interested to know why the government still provides funding and support for extreme-left groups such as these and the UAF?... SidcupResident
  • Score: 45

9:03pm Wed 20 Aug 14

Gypo.Joe says...

SidcupResident, just the same old regurgitated nonsense.

Run along now.
SidcupResident, just the same old regurgitated nonsense. Run along now. Gypo.Joe
  • Score: 45

12:28pm Fri 22 Aug 14

sarfflondonbird says...

Firstly, the protest, should not have been granted permission to take place as it did. it sounded more like harassment than a peaceful protest.
Secondly, if these people want no interference from the British, that;s all well and good by the majority of us, we don't want our kids used as 'munition fodder' in other countries conflicts, so the answer would be, go back to your own countries and fight for what you believe in, then, take back the rest of your relatives living the life of luxury over here, and start rebuilding your own countries and if, you have learned any kind of civilisation and community skills from time spent in this country, build up your police force/army/schools/h
ospitals etc, and live in a civilised way, not always wanting to war with one another. This is your chance to do something about your country.
Firstly, the protest, should not have been granted permission to take place as it did. it sounded more like harassment than a peaceful protest. Secondly, if these people want no interference from the British, that;s all well and good by the majority of us, we don't want our kids used as 'munition fodder' in other countries conflicts, so the answer would be, go back to your own countries and fight for what you believe in, then, take back the rest of your relatives living the life of luxury over here, and start rebuilding your own countries and if, you have learned any kind of civilisation and community skills from time spent in this country, build up your police force/army/schools/h ospitals etc, and live in a civilised way, not always wanting to war with one another. This is your chance to do something about your country. sarfflondonbird
  • Score: -10

4:11pm Sat 23 Aug 14

MichaelSTW says...

Just a couple of corrections. The group of local people concerned about UK investment in the Israeli arms industry entered the bank to make an announcement before holding a protest outside. The bank staff chose to lock the doors. After five or ten minutes, the group asked to go outside to continue with the planned protest and were allowed to do so. The police did not arrive till some time later and did not ask anyone to leave.

Permission was neither sought nor granted, and the previous comment about government funding is bizarre. Stop the War is funded entirely by voluntary donations. It specifically lobbies (and "condemns the actions of") the UK Government not to support acts of war and terror. It does lobby the UK Government not to directly or indirectly supply arms to groups like ISIS just because they oppose Assad in Syria.
Just a couple of corrections. The group of local people concerned about UK investment in the Israeli arms industry entered the bank to make an announcement before holding a protest outside. The bank staff chose to lock the doors. After five or ten minutes, the group asked to go outside to continue with the planned protest and were allowed to do so. The police did not arrive till some time later and did not ask anyone to leave. Permission was neither sought nor granted, and the previous comment about government funding is bizarre. Stop the War is funded entirely by voluntary donations. It specifically lobbies (and "condemns the actions of") the UK Government not to support acts of war and terror. It does lobby the UK Government not to directly or indirectly supply arms to groups like ISIS just because they oppose Assad in Syria. MichaelSTW
  • Score: -9

2:13am Thu 28 Aug 14

Whiffler says...

It's really sad that some commentators here are defending Barclays for supporting Israel by investing in the Arms Trade - perhaps only in the past if the Bank is to be believed.

These commentators are also effectively defending our Government for still selling arms to Israel. Since 2010 the UK government has licensed £42 million worth of military equipment, just to Israel alone, including targeting systems and drone components.

So British arms have been used to bomb schools (including a UN school), and the homes of some of the poorest people in the world, yes and tunnels which give almost the only access to work, goods, and crucially, to hospitals. Over 1,900 Palestinians have been killed in 50 days. Israel reports 67 deaths, mostly soldiers, not women and children as in Gaza. 1,900 : 67? Israel cannot claim to not be the prime aggressor.

Personally I condemn all violence, especially state violence, as it only begets more, and nobody truly 'wins'. Israel's actions have reinforced the view that their current policies are barbaric, and based on greed (offshore resources, as well as land grabbing) rather than any genuine fear of the Gazan people. Christians, Jews and Arabs have lived together, in peace, in that area for millennia. They can again.

After WW2 Germany rightly paid huge reparations to Israel, to compensate for some of the damage caused during the war. They will I hope remember that very soon.

'Our' government has blood on it's hands, as has Barclays if they still invest in this trade.

Please take action today and email Foreign Secretary Philip Hammond to condemn the government's continued support of the Arms Trade. E-mail address: fcocorrespondence@fc
o.gov.uk
It's really sad that some commentators here are defending Barclays for supporting Israel by investing in the Arms Trade - perhaps only in the past if the Bank is to be believed. These commentators are also effectively defending our Government for still selling arms to Israel. Since 2010 the UK government has licensed £42 million worth of military equipment, just to Israel alone, including targeting systems and drone components. So British arms have been used to bomb schools (including a UN school), and the homes of some of the poorest people in the world, yes and tunnels which give almost the only access to work, goods, and crucially, to hospitals. Over 1,900 Palestinians have been killed in 50 days. Israel reports 67 deaths, mostly soldiers, not women and children as in Gaza. 1,900 : 67? Israel cannot claim to not be the prime aggressor. Personally I condemn all violence, especially state violence, as it only begets more, and nobody truly 'wins'. Israel's actions have reinforced the view that their current policies are barbaric, and based on greed (offshore resources, as well as land grabbing) rather than any genuine fear of the Gazan people. Christians, Jews and Arabs have lived together, in peace, in that area for millennia. They can again. After WW2 Germany rightly paid huge reparations to Israel, to compensate for some of the damage caused during the war. They will I hope remember that very soon. 'Our' government has blood on it's hands, as has Barclays if they still invest in this trade. Please take action today and email Foreign Secretary Philip Hammond to condemn the government's continued support of the Arms Trade. E-mail address: fcocorrespondence@fc o.gov.uk Whiffler
  • Score: 0

11:28am Thu 28 Aug 14

marty17 says...

@sarrflondonbird. Is there a subtext of racism running through your comment. Are yiubsugggesting that people from the middle east or the Arab world don't have any civilization?? That region of the world erected great civilisations thousands of years ago while we were still living in mud huts
@sarrflondonbird. Is there a subtext of racism running through your comment. Are yiubsugggesting that people from the middle east or the Arab world don't have any civilization?? That region of the world erected great civilisations thousands of years ago while we were still living in mud huts marty17
  • Score: 1

6:18pm Thu 28 Aug 14

Anniebeee says...

Thank goodness there are still people willing to protest against businesses that are profiting from the situation in occupied Palestine. Day after day we have seen innocent civilians including over 500 children and babies being killed by Israeli shells. Many more have been dreadfully injured. Homes, schools, hospitals and factories have been left in ruins.
Barclay's recently put a message on its facebook page saying it holds shares in El-Bit. El-Bit makes the drones used in Gaza. I would urge Barclay's customers to ask Barclays to cut all links with El-Bit and any other connection with the arms industry.
Demonstrations (coupled with proper reporting by papers such as NewsShopper) are often the only way to let the public and customers know about these matters. I am not a Barclay's customer - but if I was, I would want to know what they are up to so I could decide whether to be a customer any more.
Thank goodness there are still people willing to protest against businesses that are profiting from the situation in occupied Palestine. Day after day we have seen innocent civilians including over 500 children and babies being killed by Israeli shells. Many more have been dreadfully injured. Homes, schools, hospitals and factories have been left in ruins. Barclay's recently put a message on its facebook page saying it holds shares in El-Bit. El-Bit makes the drones used in Gaza. I would urge Barclay's customers to ask Barclays to cut all links with El-Bit and any other connection with the arms industry. Demonstrations (coupled with proper reporting by papers such as NewsShopper) are often the only way to let the public and customers know about these matters. I am not a Barclay's customer - but if I was, I would want to know what they are up to so I could decide whether to be a customer any more. Anniebeee
  • Score: 16

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