G4S, the global security company, will come under pressure at its annual general meeting on Thursday to disclose exactly when it will be withdrawing from its Israeli prison contracts.
Chief executive, Ashley Almanza, indicated at last year’s AGM that the company was aiming to terminate its work with the Israel Prison Service but failed to give a timetable for withdrawal.
Campaigners for Palestinian human rights, including executive members of Palestine Solidarity Campaign, will attend the AGM as shareholders to press Almanza and the G4S board for a schedule.
Hugh Lanning, Chair of Palestine Solidarity Campaign, said: “G4S must provide the exact month and year in which it will cease to work with the Israel Prison Service, when it will cease to work in Israel’s prisons in the West Bank, and when it will cease to provide services to Israel’s military checkpoints in the West Bank.
“We won’t be happy with the vague answers we’ve received in the past. G4S needs to prove that it will be ending its role in the Israeli occupation of Palestinian land by providing firm dates for its withdrawal.”
G4S provides security systems to prisons within Israel and in the West Bank where Palestinians, including children, are held, often without charge or trial. Organisations including Amnesty International and UNICEF have documented routine torture and abuse within the incarceration facilities.
The company also provides equipment and maintenance services to Israeli military checkpoints in the West Bank which severely restrict Palestinian freedom of movement.
Lanning said: “This is the third year running that we will be putting the heat on G4S at its AGM.
“Meanwhile, the company continues to lose security contracts around the world as a result of campaigning by human rights activists. G4S must understand that it cannot profit from the Israeli occupation without feeling the consequences.”
Note to editors
The G4S annual general meeting will take place on Thursday 4th June, at 11am, at the Excel Centre, London
Amnesty International: Starved of Justice: Palestinians detained without trial by Israel
UNICEF Children in Israeli military detention
Palestine Solidarity Campaign The Case Against G4S
In April 2015, 20 South African companies announced the termination of their security contracts with G4S because of the group’s links to the Israel Prison Service.
In May 2015, the University of Helsinki cancelled its security contract with G4S, following a campaign by academics and students
This media release was sent to national and international media on 3 June 2014