Protest at BAE and MBDA against arms sales to Turkey

On the 22 March, BKSN, along with friends of Anna Campbell, went to BAE Systems and MBDA offices in Filton to protest against their complicity in the genocide committed by the Turkish state and their allies within Daesh.

BAE  along with MBDA have been supplying weapons and fighter jets to Erdogan and his nationalist thugs with the blessing of the UK government. These arms are being used to massacre civilians and Kurdish freedom forces defending the revolution in Afrin from the brutal  invasion. Thousands of people, including Bristolian Anna Campbell, have been killed as a direct result of this.

Since 2012 a direct democratic revolution has been forming in Rojava and Northern Syria based on the principles of womens liberation, equality, secularism, direct-democracy, anti-capitalism and ecology.  NATO member Turkey and it’s Daesh allies are against this revolution, resulting in the targeting of the Afrin region since January 2018. This military attack, known as ‘Operation Olive Branch’, has taken countless lives from the defense units (the YPJ and the YPG) as well as from innocent civilians. Hundreds of thousands of inhabitants have fled the region due to the reign of terror that is now ensuing, with practices including rape, systemic oppression, murder, torture, looting and ethnic cleansing integrated into the regime. This oppression is facilitated by weapons produced by BAE and MBDA, as well as arms deals signed in the UK. (Prime minister Theresa May recently signed an arms deal with Erdogan worth £100 million in January 2018.)

At today’s action a large group of people showing solidarity with those in Afrin strolled past the empty security box straight towards the BAE company building, where banners were unraveled, flags of solidarity waved, pans banged, slogans shouted and placards raised. One foyer was occupied and those arriving to work were greeted with chants such as “Desktop Murders” and “We will fight, we will win, long live Afrin”. The group also protested outside MBDA’s offices. One arms dealer (employee) came outside and was incredibly verbally aggressive, attempting to defend their unjustified role. Before leaving, we ensured that ALL the employees within the site were made aware of our presence by walking around the site shouting our message outlining their involvement within the atrocities taking place in Afrin.

We will continue resisting oppression and genocide with our fight against the military industrial complex and their dictator customers.