On the 26th - 29th October 2009 two women will be put on trial for
taking part in a blockade of Israeli company ’ produce
the 'Bloody Valentine' Week of Action.
They are accused of obstructing police officers and assaulting a police
officer during the women only action. This is only the second time that
people have been brought to court for actions against Carmel Agrexco in
over 5 years of sustained direct action at the London depot.
The action was taken in solidarity with the Palestinian people on whose
land the flowers, fruits and vegetables are grown and harvested. The
action came in the aftermath of the 3-week Israeli invasion of Gaza in
which more than 1,400 Palestinians were killed. Carmel-Agrexco is the
Israeli national exporter of and imports large
quantities of goods from illegal Israeli settlements on occupied
Palestinian land. As feminists and as Palestinian solidarity activists,
the women blockading Agrexco aimed to challenge the oppression of
Palestinians by targeting a tool of the occupation.
According to a statement the activists released prior to their trial:
Carmel Agrexco directly profits from the Israeli occupation, which
colonises Palestine. These goods are grown in the rich soils of the
Jordan Valley where the indigenous people are prevented from building
houses, schools, accessing water. Palestinians, including many children,
work and are exploited in Agrexco-owned settlement packing houses. The
sale and distribution of goods produced in settlements must be resisted
in the countries which receive them as exports. The UK is the most
export market for Agrexco and so we think that challenging and
disrupting their business here is important.
During previous direct actions the police have been reluctant to arrest
any protestors – even when they have invaded the warehouses, destroyed
goods and locked on to the gates for over 10 hours. Evidence strongly
suggests that this is a result of collusion between Agrexco and the
police. In the first (and until now, only) trial of direct action
activists at the depot in 2006, the case collapsed after evidence of
Carmel-Agrexco's dealings with illegal settlements was disclosed.
The charges were dropped and subsequent actions no longer lead to court
This action, undeniably feminist in spirit, has resulted in the first
people being brought to trial for activities against Agrexco since 2006.
The systematic and entrenched sexism we know exists within the police
force was clearly reflected in the misogynistic comments and treatment
these women received during the action. In this gendered context, we ask
ourselves why the police and CPS have decided to try this case, rather
than the 30+ others preceding it
This case is crucial in the continuing campaign against Carmel Agrexco.
Please spread the word about the trial, post the defendants’ statement
widely and take action against Carmel Agrexco.
For more information about Carmel Agrexco see:
For more information about the trial contact: