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Pro-Palestine activists force closure of Edinburgh weapons factory

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They struck at 5am this morning

Campaigners have targeted the Leonardo factory in Edinburgh for its involvement in supplying ordnance and military hardware against Palestinians.

Palestine Action Scotland shut down the Edinburgh factory after occupying the roof of the site forcing its closure at 5am this morning.

Four activists entered the site, despite the high security and double fence, and have begun dismantling the site - taking apart electronic equipment, air conditioning systems, windows, while covering premises in trademark red paint, symbolising the blood spilt with Leonardo weapons.

The activists intend to maintain the occupation for as long as possible at the factory of Leonardo UK, 2 Crewe Road North, Edinburgh EH5 2XS, to cause maximum disruption against the company which supplies a range of military equipment and targeting systems for Israel's occupation forces.

A spokesperson from Palestine Action Scotland has said: "We've taken on Thales, and now we've taken on Leonardo. Any company supplying Israel should be well aware by now that Scotland is not a safe place for them to conduct their deadly trade.

“If you assist the ethnic cleansing of Palestine, know that we'll come and shut you down."

This is the second major action by Palestine Action Scotland, with the group launching in July of last year with an occupation of Thales' factory in Glasgow, against the French weapons company partnered in the manufacture of Elbit Systems drones.

Leonardo, one of the world's largest arms companies, has extensive ties to the Israeli colonial regime, supplying Israel with Aermacchi M-346 aircraft and components for its Apache attack helicopters, all while benefitting from millions in Scottish Enterprise funding.

Leonardo recently completed a merger with Israeli defence company RADA Electronic Industries, in a move that Leonardo hope will give them a "stable domestic presence in the Israeli industrial context".

The Edinburgh site in particular is touted by Leonardo as a specialist in 'high-energy military lasers'. Their laser targeting systems are rigged to F-35 fighter jets, which Israel have regularly used for deliberate attacks on civilian targets.