23 October 2018   |  Last Updated 22-12-2014 12:50

      Saturday 20, December 2014

      VIDEO: Campaigners sing alternative Christmas carols outside Manchester Barclays

      The Manchester Branch of the Palestine Solidarity Campaign (PSC) campaigned outside Barclays today about the banks continuing financial support for Israeli arms company Elbit.

      There was a police presence as the group sang ‘alternative’ Christmas carols outside the Market Street branch from 11am this morning.

      PCS’s aim is to discourage people from buying Israeli goods through boycotting, as Linda Clare, the campaigns chair, told Quays News:

      “A new campaign has been started in the last few weeks since the summer and the terrible bombing on Gaza because Barclay’s used to seriously invest in Israeli weapons and in Elbit, which is an Israeli company that’s in this country that makes the drones.

      “We just thought the Saturday before Christmas we’ll do some alternative words to carols and try to get people to realize the role of Barclays.”

      The protest outside Barclays in Manchester is one of several taking place in the country today, in what is being dubbed by retail experts as ‘panic Saturday’ because it is the last Saturday before Christmas.

      Yesterday protesters stood outside the Brighton branch of the bank for an hour but were removed. One man there was arrested by police after gluing himself to the banks front doors.

      In the summer over 500 children from Gaza died following drone strikes across the city, which is why the PCS campaign groups want the bank to stop owning shares in the company that makes the drones.

      In a statement, a Barclays spokesperson said:

      “Barclays is not an investor in Elbit Systems Ltd.

      The allegations that Barclays is in an investor in the defence industry may stem from our historic ownership of a business formerly called BGI (Barclays Global Investors), an asset management division which did have significant investment positions in defence companies. Barclays sold this company in 2009, and has no on-going interest, financial or otherwise, in BGI.”

      By: Vicky Barker