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Corporate Watch's new briefing exposes how the Israeli economy profits from the siege of health services in Gaza and highlights calls from Palestinian health workers to boycott Israeli pharmaceutical companies.

NEWS AND ANALYSIS

International lenders and their domestic Greek collaborators (the coalition government) are imposing widespread impoverishment and austerity in order to serve their interests. Meanwhile, the debt mechanism continues to chip away at the last remnants of rights that have remained.

 

This week the Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) discontinued a case against five activists charged with disrupting the Defence and Security Equipment International (DSEi) arms fair. Here is a personal account from one of the defendants.

 

The company the Home Office has chosen to run some of the biggest immigration detention centres in the UK say they are “unable” to answer our questions about a senior staff member's role in the lack of fire safety provision in one of their other detention centres.

 

Corporate Watch and Foil Vedanta will be speaking at the Centre of World Environmental History in Sussex University on Friday 28th February about maritime interests in the Tamil seas, the Tamil genocide and UK government and business interests.

 

Valentine's Day is upon us and for supermarkets and florists that means a massive increase in the sale of flowers. But where are the bouquets they are flogging to romantic couples grown?

 

Corporate Watch will be speaking about how Israel's economy and Israeli companies benefit from the siege of Gaza at events all over the UK in the next couple of months. All are welcome.

 

Serco have given up a lucrative government contract to detain hundreds of asylum seekers at Colnbrook Immigration Removal Centre outside Heathrow. American custody firm GEO Group were also stripped of their contract at the adjacent Harmondsworth facility following a Home Office reshuffle. In a surprise move, outsiders Mitie won a £180m bid to run both detention centres over the next eight years, starting from September 2014. This makes Mitie the Home Office's leading provider of immigration detention services, “less than three years after entering the market”.

 

An appeal to the Supreme Court by two campaigners against the Ahava store in London has been unsuccessful. The case relates to the campaign in which Ahava, a multinational Israeli Dead Sea products company, was forced to close its flagship store Monmouth Street, central London in 2011 after two years of concerted pressure by grassroots groups.

 

We need funds to help us to get information-for-action to campaigners who will use it to struggle in solidarity with the Palestinians. Please donate to the project.

 

This February, several activists are on trial for taking action against the DSEi arms fair. The intention was to stop the arms fair from being set up by blockading roads used to transport military equipment and weaponry into the Excel Centre.

 

In the Gaza Strip there is no escape from Israel's drones. Nicknameed 'zenana' by Palestinians because of their noisy buzzing, the drones (remote control aircraft) are omnipresent. Sometimes they are there to carry out an extra judicial killing and sometimes they are there for surveillance. If you are on the ground you do not know which and you have no choice but to try to ignore them.

 

After thirty people in Erbil, Iraqi Kurdistan, lost their sight following injections in a government hospital, questions are being asked about a drug-testing agreement between FDAS, a Nottingham-based company, and the Kurdistan Regional Government.

 
REPORTS FROM PALESTINE

Hundreds of Palestinians have come out in support of the people on trial for taking action at the DSEi arms fair.

 

On Monday 2 December 2011 Gazan fisherfolk and hundreds of their Palestinian supporters as well as international activists participated in a flotilla to highlight the Israeli restrictions, harassment and violence against fishermen.

 

On 30 November 2013 Palestinians gathered in Gaza City's As-Saha market to protest against the Prawer Plan. The event was part of a Global 'Day of Rage' against the Israeli government plan which plans to forcibly evict up to 70 000 Palestinian Bedouin into seven reservations. The rally was called by the Intifada Youth Coalition and included speeches by the Coalition and a government spokeswoman.

 

On Monday, 25 November 2013, a conference on the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) movement against Israeli apartheid, colonization and occupation was held in Gaza City by the Arab Center for Agricultural Development (ACAD) and Norwegian People’s Aid (NPA).

 
NEWS FROM THE CO-OP

This ground-breaking new book comprises of twenty essays – written by writers, academics and activists and edited by Corporate Watch researcher Rebecca Fisher – which collectively argue that in today's 'democracy' elite interests are served by the limitations placed upon popular participation in decision-making, by the manipulation of public opinion through propaganda, and from the attempts to co-opt, marginalise and/or repress oppositional politics.