by New Worker
DOZENS of Palestine Solidarity supporters targeted the London headquarters of the security firm G4S in Victoria Street last Thursday evening to protest against the corporation’s provision of security services to Israeli prisons.
And they succeeded in occupying the reception area of the building, bringing banners, posters and placards and a mock-up prison cage to represent the horrors inflicted on Palestinian prisoners, including many children.
G4S services Israeli prisons where Palestinian prisoners are illegally transferred in serious violation of the Fourth Geneva Convention. In the case of child prisoners, the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child is also breached.
G4S also provides equipment for prisons and detention facilities in the Israeli-occupied West Bank, at which human rights organisations have documented systematic torture and ill treatment of Palestinian prisoners, including child prisoners.
G4S provides equipment and services to Israeli checkpoints, and has also signed contracts for equipment and services for the West Bank Israeli Police headquarters and to private businesses based in illegal Israeli settlements.
Last month campaigners celebrated the BBC’s decision not to award their security contract, worth £80 million, to G4S. PSC has campaigned since July 2013, urging the BBC to reject any bid by G4S, the firm which provides security services to Israeli prisons.
PSC’s campaign resulted in more than 2,000 viewers and listeners urging the BBC not to award G4S with a contract because of its involvement in human rights abuses in Israel’s prisons.
In December 2013, the British Government issued advisory business risk guidance warning that EU “citizens and businesses should also be aware of the potential reputational implications of getting involved in economic and financial activities in settlements, as well as possible abuses of the rights of individuals.”
Sarah Colborne, Director of the Palestine Solidarity Campaign, said, before the protest last Thursday: “G4S are well aware that the controversy that surrounds their involvement in the human rights abuses against Palestinians is not going away until they withdraw from providing services to institutions such as the Israeli prison service. It is unacceptable that G4S should be involved in such clear breaches of human rights.”
The Palestine Solidarity Campaign is running an on-line petition calling on G4S to withdraw from Israeli prisons, and end its involvement with Israel’s human rights abuses. It can be found at: