The protest, organised by campaigners against EDO MBM, a Brighton based arms company manufacturing military components used by the US and its allies, began at Barclays Bank. Barclays is a service provider to ITT Exelis, EDO MBM’s parent company, and is the largest global investor in the arms trade.
Sussex Police attempted to use Police Liaison Officers to infiltrate the march and gather information about protesters. However, participants in the march took direct action to kick Liaison Officers off the demo and keep the demonstration police free.
Chloe Marsh of Smash EDO said “hundreds of Brightonians turned out to protest against the threat of a new imperialist war in Iran. Those who took part in the protest also effectively prevented Police Liaison teams from maintaining a presence on the protest.”
The lack of police use of force on this demonstration was notable. Much though Sussex Police claim that this is due to the success of their new Police Liaison Officers, in fact the Liaison Offers were not engaged with by the attendees.
Smash EDO are in the midst of a three month Summer of Resistance campaign against the factory and are planning a mass citizen’s weapons inspection of the EDO factory on the 16th July. The campaign will continue until the EDO factory closes down.