CAMPAIGN Against Arms Trade (CAAT) has released an interactive map of all the locations across the UK where F-35 components are made. The F-35 is a supersonic fighter aircraft used by the Israeli military. CAAT estimates the value of the components UK industry has supplied for Israeli F-35s to be at least £336 million since 2016.
CAAT’s new map will enable campaigners across the country to find out where the components are produced, and to protest against the local companies which are profiting from Israel’s attack on Gaza.
The UK Foreign Secretary, David Cameron recommended continuing arms sales to Israel on 12 December 2023, despite previous Foreign Office assessments stating there were “serious concerns” about breaches of International Humanitarian Law (IHL) and Israel’s commitment and ability to comply with IHL. Cameron further accepted that Israel has a different interpretation of its IHL obligations.
The ICJ ruling on 26 January, which stated that there is a ‘plausible’ case that Israel is committing genocide in Gaza, and imposed provisional measures on Israel to prevent genocide, has led to increased calls on the UK government to stop arms exports to Israel. The UK has a legal obligation to stop arms exports if there is a clear risk they could be used in violations of International Humanitarian Law (IHL), and under the Genocide Convention which places obligations on states to take action to prevent and punish genocide.
CAAT’s Media Coordinator, Emily Apple, said: “This is a great resource for campaigners across the country. People do not want genocide profiteers on their doorstep, and this map will enable communities to take action against the companies that are complicit in war crimes in their local area.
“However, this isn’t something we should have to do. The legal position is clear. Israel is committing war crimes, including bombing hospitals and refugee camps and deliberately targeting medical workers. This government should immediately suspend arms exports to Israel. Instead it is prioritising the profits of arms dealers over Palestinian lives, and it is down to ordinary people to hold these companies to account for their murderous deals.”
* View the interactive map here.
* Source: Campaign Against Arms Trade