Workers for a Free Palestine protestors blockade entrances to Instro Precision at Discovery Park

Police and protestors are at the Instro site Photo Debbie Day

Around 150 protesters from Workers for a Free Palestine are demonstrating at the entrances to the Instro Precision site at Discovery Park, Sandwich, this morning (October 25).

Protesters, made up of trade unionists including from Unite, UNISON, the NEU, UCU, the BMA and BFAWU, say the company supplies Israel with weapons to kill Palestinian people in Gaza.

Instro Precision, which is owned by Israeli military company Elbit Systems, says it is a supplier and system integrator of support equipment for military and commercial electro-optical sensors in the world. It says it  supplies ‘high precision military equipment’ and specialises in support equipment like tripods and manual pan and tilt heads for military observation equipment. Instro produces observation, surveillance and targeting systems.

Photo Debbie Day

In 2019 the firm moved to Discovery Park from Broadstairs, where it had been the target of numerous protests. There have also been several protests at its site in Discovery Park.

The demonstration today comes amid escalated conflict in the Gaza Strip which broke out between the Palestinian Militant Group Hamas and Israel earlier this month.

Photo Debbie Day

Amnesty International says that since 7 October “Israeli forces have launched thousands of air bombardments in the Gaza Strip, killing at least 3,793 people, mostly civilians, including more than 1,500 children, according to the Palestinian Ministry of Health in Gaza. Approximately 12,500 have been injured and more than 1,000 bodies are still trapped beneath the rubble.

“In Israel, more than 1,400 people, most of them civilians, have been killed and some 3,300 others were injured, according to the Israeli Ministry of Health after armed groups from the Gaza Strip launched an unprecedented attack against Israel on 7 October.”

A Kent Police spokesperson said: “Kent Police officers are currently at the scene of a protest outside Discovery Park near Sandwich.”

32 Comments

  1. The ongoing slaughter in Gaza has no justification whatsoever. Western governments should hang their heads in shame for supporting Israel in this conflict. The daily bombing of Palestinians is a war crime egged on by the US and UK. It makes me ashamed to be British.

    • Robert you are so right! Hamas attacks and kills innocent Israeli men women, children, and babies and are quite rightly named as a terrorist organisation. Israel attacks Gaza killing thousands of innocent men, women, children, and babies. They also turn off water, electricity, and block food, and medical supplies. They are bombing buildings to smithereens, so why is Israel not called a Terrorist state? For many years I have been donating to Medical Aid for Palestinians by Direct Debit, and by making extra donations over the phone when funds allow, the phone number is: 020 7226 4114. Give generously, and stop Israel killinng innocent men, women, children, and babies!

  2. I would not rely on Craig McKinley to sign anything unless it benefited him personally. He’s a Tory don’t forget.

  3. The ongoing Israeli aggression is going to result in the total destruction of Gaza. What happened to the promise of avoiding civilian casualties? The Israeli government asked Palestinian families to move to the south of Gaza for safety, and they are still bombing them. It is genocide of the Palestinian population, to which the UK government has signed up to.

  4. I wonder who put the terrorist up to start this genocide against innocent civilians. They must have known it was just the excuse the Israelis needed to do the evil things they are now doing in retaliation.

    • The Israelis have been killig Palestinians on a daily basis since 1948.
      It is said that the Hamas attacks (not a genocide) were the Israelis’ 9/11. I am convinced that the original 9/11 was an inside job, anyway.
      Netanyahu is an evil man. Also corrupt and crooked. The entire West is bowing down to him. Why?

    • That’s a good question.
      Hamas didn’t just randomly decide to slaughter some Isralis. They had a longer term objective in mind.
      Goodness knows what.
      But I can’t see what Israel’s objective of bombing the Gaza Strip to rubble is. Yes, it might kill some of Hamas. But in the meanwhile, it is killing thousands upon thousands of ordinary civilians.

  5. The murder of Israelis by Hamas is unjustified and wrong. The murder of Palestinians by Israel is wrong. Hamas are terrorists, the Israeli government are committing genocide and our government stands idly by. Innocent people are dying and have died by the score thanks to the ego of a few men who think they’re right to the point of justifying the deaths of thousands.

  6. No one has the moral high ground in this conflict.
    Decisions made in 1916(Sykes/Picot agreement) and 1917 (Balfour declaration) have cast a long shadow.The holocaust was a European catastrophe which we have visited upon the Palestinians.
    Israeli hubris and lack of respect for their neighbours has visited upon them an atrocity. Israel created a monster when they built up HAMAS as a counterweight to Fatah.Had Israel being willing to settle on a genuine two state solution and has their security been up to snuff, the terrorists would have been foiled before they got anywhere near the kibbutz and HAMAS could not exist in conditions of live and let live.
    We have two sides whose total hatred for each other means that these humanitarian catastrophes will keep happening unless each side talks to each other.
    There should be a pause or ceasefire to allow the UN to bring in supplies.
    If nothing is done other countries will be brought in and the whole middle East will blow up with untold consequences for the world.Hamas is looking to bring in other parties, and of course Iran and Russia are seeking to prosper from this disaster.

    • What antisemitism is this? Please provide evidence of the antisemitism? It’s a very serious accusation & needs to be substantiated

      • You mean the claim that the slaughter of Israelites (you know, the one where they beheaded babies) was an inside job by the Israili PM?

        I was admonished by the administrator of this website for my supposed racism yesterday (presumably for either winding up a Welshwoman or stating that Black History Month isn’t needed), yet statements like this go unchallenged.

        Perhaps we need a Jewish History Month, to remind youngsters of the more recent attrocities MY people have gone though?

        • Where on these comments does the claim that the slaughter of Israelis was “an inside job by the Israeli PM” appear?

          Perhaps Peter Checksfield could give an English translation for the Hebrew words on the 1.34 pm comment above.

        • You weren’t ‘admonished,’ you were politely asked to consider whether a comment was offensive before posting. A reasonable request I think.

          • Perhaps you need to “politely ask” others on here then, Kathy… and, as Discovery Park isn’t even in Thanet, I have to question why you even felt the need to run this biased report on here – a report that fails to even mention the recent atrocities against the people of Israel by people from Palestine?

          • It mentions losses on both sides in the quote from Amnesty International and makes no other comment on either party in the conflict, it is a report of a demo and those same demos have been reported on here previously as has the work at Instro, so it is incorrect to say it is biased. I have reported on Discovery Park several times in the past. If I receive valid complaints about others I most certainly will politely request that they take care with their comments and indeed have done exactly that on some occasions.

  7. Ignorance is bliss.
    I remember watching the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine blowing up airliners at Dawson’s Field. Along with interviews with the highly intellectual Marxist revolutionary Leila Khaled. There was a sort of moral high ground of some sort there.
    Mind you there was also the slaughter at the Munich Olympics and later, Entebbe.
    In the meantime, the Marxists in The Soviet Union, Libya and Iraq have fallen. To be replaced as funders of Arabian Bedouin terror by the lovely Muslim Republic of Iran (Despite its title it’s not “Islamic”. That would include all of “The People of the Book”!).
    Gaza’s intellectual standards have fallen considerably too. How would Leila Khaled and her sisters fair today? It’s difficult to bomb a people back to the Stone Age who are already there.
    I do hope all the ladies protesting watch where this link takes them. This guy is one of Gaza’s contemporary intellectual leaders. Be afraid. Be very afraid of what you wish for!

    https://twitter.com/harrywe26805243/status/1716500476307415350?t=7lyLedw_nh5OXVuEPEHlSQ&s=19

    • Iran whether it suits your narrative or not, is an Islamic country! I see you can’t bring yourself to condemn the continuing bombardment of innocent Palestinian families by Israeli forces. Hamas does not represent many Palestinians,indeed they have never held government on the West Bank, but before 8th October Israeli forces killed 1 Palestinian child a week there on average.

      • Iran is a Muslim theocracy.
        “Islam” is the Arabic word that describes the family of Jews, Christians and Muslims.
        I condemn the killing or maiming of anyone who is not a willing participant in any form of combat anywhere.
        Gaza is not in the West Bank.
        Hamas was elected to the government of Gaza by Gazans.
        Open your eyes and ears wide.
        The U.N. created Israel & Universal Human Rights simultaneously. It was not an accident or coincidence.

  8. It’s not anti-semitic to express sympathy for the Palestinian people or their dreams of a genuine two nation state based on the pre-1967 borders. Diplomacy has spectacularly failed over the years.

    The world has turned a blind eye to provocative and hostile acts by Israeli settlers in the West Bank. Even the UN condemned their policy of building as many settlements as possible on occupied land.

    The fact the world is now turning a blind eye to the ongoing destruction of Gaza is shameful. It’s people deserve better. Deliberately switching off power, restricting fuel and water and food to millions of innocent people is genocide. Nothing less.

    And, yes, Hamas committed atrocities and deserve to be wiped out. Everyone sees that.

  9. Towards the end of the 2nd World War German NAZI’s cut off the water supply, food, electricity, medical aid, and raised Warsaw to the ground, killing thousands! Sound familiar?

  10. Let’s be clear. The “1967 border” refers to Israel’s borders with Egypt, Syria & Jordan. Gaza was part of Egypt. Egypt don’t want it or its inhabitants back. There has never been a “Palestinian state”. “Palestinian” is an invention. These people are Bedouin nomads for whom formal ownership of land or borders never existed prior to the demise of the Ottoman Empire.
    It is horrendous watching from afar human beings slaughtering each other. Whether in Israel and Ukraine today. Iraq, Afghanistan, Syria & Libya last decade. Vietnam & Biafra when I was a kid. Unfortunately, those who oppress peoples the most are often their own rulers. Which holds true especially for Gazans.
    The United Nations created Israel & Universal Human Rights simultaneously. Unfortunately, the surrounding states have refused to accept this and persistently attack the U.N. creation. Then cry foul of U.N. rules when it suits their purpose. Stirring up , as Lenin put it, “Useful Idiots” elsewhere. Which is what these well intentioned protesters are

    Before Israel, there was a British mandate, not a Palestinian state.
    -Before the British Mandate, there was the Ottoman Empire, not a Palestinian state.
    -Before the Ottoman Empire, there was the Islamic state of the Mamluks of Egypt, not a Palestinian state.
    -Before the Islamic state of the Mamluks of Egypt, there was the Ayubid Empire, not a Palestinian state. Godfrey IV of Boulogne, known as Godfrey de Bouillon, conqueror of Jerusalem in 1099
    -Before the Ayubid Empire, there was the Frankish and Christian Kingdom of Jerusalem, not a Palestinian state.
    -Before the Kingdom of Jerusalem, there was the Umayyad and Fatimid empires, not a Palestinian state.
    -Before the Umayyad and Fatimid empires, there was the Byzantine empire, not a Palestinian state.
    -Before the Byzantine Empire, there were the Sassanids, not a Palestinian state.
    -Before the Sassanid Empire, there was the Byzantine Empire, not a Palestinian state.
    -Before the Byzantine Empire, there was the Roman Empire, not a Palestinian state.
    -Before the Roman Empire, there was the Hasmonean state, not a Palestinian state.
    -Before the Hasmonean state, there was the Seleucid, not a Palestinian state.
    -Before the Seleucid empire, there was the empire of Alexander the Great, not a Palestinian state.
    -Before the empire of Alexander the Great, there was the Persian empire, not a Palestinian state.
    -Before the Persian Empire, there was the Babylonian Empire, not a Palestinian state.
    -Before the Babylonian Empire, there were the Kingdoms of Israel and Judah, not a Palestinian state.
    -Before the Kingdoms of Israel and Judah, there was the Kingdom of Israel, not a Palestinian state.
    -Before the kingdom of Israel, there was the theocracy of the twelve tribes of Israel, not a Palestinian state.
    -Before the theocracy of the twelve tribes of Israel, there was an agglomeration of independent Canaanite city-kingdoms, not a Palestinian statehood.
    Actually, in this piece of land there has been everything, EXCEPT A PALESTINIAN STATE!

  11. Peter Checksfield is a contrarian and not a pleasant one. I set out my comments and gave an historical perspective.If that perspective is uncomfortable for any of the parties to the conflict and those states of Europe, including Russia,that made decisions that led to this catastrophe so be it.
    Catastrophe is what it is. The way forward is to stop the violence on both sides, return the hostages as a small act of kindness, which might atone in a small way for the atrocity Hamas committed,and allow aid in to Gaza.
    At sometime there will have to be negotiations.Israel has diplomatic relations with Germany, yet Germany is the epicentre of the holocaust, an act of such unspeakable barbarity and hatred, as to be unforgivable.
    If there is to be peace, it will be based on a two state solution,of Israel and Palestine, living in tolerance of each other if not harmony.
    The total destruction of one or the other will not bring peace, only further rounds of death and destruction.
    Two wrongs do not make a right Peter Checksfield. Because you allowed yourself to overreach the tolerance levels of this website does not mean that you are absolved if someone else does the same (which I didn’t).
    You have every right, to comment freely on anything, but it must stay within bounds, and of course it can be critiqued for error, misinformation, and a lack of understanding, which is why you find me so difficult to deal with.
    We all have partial thoughts, but it is how you deal with your inner bigot,is what marks you out as a person who is prepared to listen and tolerate different viewpoints.

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