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BT building invaded as part of DSEi 09 week of protest

September 8th, 2009 · post by Fred Goodsell · 3 Comments

Approximately 150 protesters took to the streets of London today to mark the start of the DSEi arms fair taking place in the Excel Centre in East London.

The protest was organised by a network of people working under the banner of Disarm DSEi. Disarm DSEi had produced a map of arms traders and investors in the London area. Some of these became targets for today’s protest.

People gathered at an RBS building and moved off around the the city stopping to protest outside of Barclay’s Bank, Legal & General, Schroders and Lloyds TSB who all have links to the arms trade.

Towards the end of the march the protest drew close to a BT building. Demonstrators rushed forward, pushing through the locked revolving doors and into the building where they spread out shouting ‘Shame on you’ and holding a banner stating ‘Bomb makers and bankers, murdering wankers’ to the applause of catering staff working in the building. BT holds £59 million worth of shares in the international arms trade.

The protest then moved onto AXA where windows where smashed and paint bombs thrown. AXA has £6,207 million invested in the international arms trade. People also left messages written in chalk and taped onto the front of the building.

http://www.archive.lasthours.org.uk/wp-content/uploads/2009/09/DSEiBTinvaded.mov
Protesters storm the BT building

No arrests where made.

See time line of events

→ 3 CommentsThis entry belongs to the following categories: News · notes of resistance

3 responses so far

  • Old Git posted:
    Sep 12, 2009 at 2:50 pm. Comment #1

    So what should the office workers at BT about their bosses investments in the arms trade? Get another job? It’s a bit simplistic to shout ’shame on you’ at working people as if they had any choice in what the CEO’s choose to make their money from. That’s not a radical politics, that just moralism that gets no-one anywhere.

    Better to talk about these points with working people than make them feel bad because they happen to work in an office in a company that exploits people.

    You wouldn’t go to a bank and shout at the cashier because the bosses invest in arms!

  • Tom Fiction posted:
    Sep 14, 2009 at 12:25 pm. Comment #2

    I agree. I think this protest has some issue over militancy versus effectiveness.

  • Disaem posted:
    Oct 19, 2009 at 9:04 pm. Comment #3

    Hey, it worked… a lot of the workers in BT were so shocked that they got in touch to find out about BT’s role in the arms trade, and some apparently started research themsevles. We were never asking them to quit their jobs…. in fact, it could be argued, that we need them in those jobs to put pressure on BT to withdraw shares.