Kitchener factory blocked by protesters demanding arms embargo on Israel

A group of protesters gathered outside the Colt Canada plant on Wilson Avenue in Kitchener.

The group alleges that guns made by that company are being used by the Israeli military in its war against Hamas.

One of the picketers, Kitchener resident Sasha Koegler, told CityNews 570 that the group is joining other protests Canada-wide targeting companies that are allegedly involved in supplying arms to Israel.

“We’re here to demand that Canada impose an arms embargo on Israel immediately,” said Koegler. “We will continue to show up and prevent the flow of arms to Israel until Canada does it’s duty and lives up to its legal and moral obligations. We’re just a regular group of people that realize if Canada does not live up to its legal and moral obligations that we have to take a stand and we have to interrupt business as usual.”

Koegler added that an arms embargo would stop the authorization of permits to companies like Colt Canada.

Protesters blocked the entrance the Colt Canada factory in Kitchener Feb. 28. / CityNews Kitchener

Last month, the International Court of Justice (ICJ) ruled that there is a plausible case that Israel is committing genocide.

Shatha Mahmoud, an organizer with the Palestinian Youth Movement said she has family in Gaza, and she warned the federal government that if the ICJ rules the Israel/Hamas war as a genocide, Canada could be judged as complicit.

“This is a call to action that has been taken up by different cities across Canada. Calgary, Peterborough, Toronto, Vancouver, they’ve all been shutting down different arms manufacturers all across Canada,” said Mahmoud.

Mahmoud alleged Colt is just one of eight local weapons manufacturers involved in arming Israel. She could not confirm whether there will be more protests.

CityNews 570 has reached out to Colt Canada for comment.

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