Swedish company out of West Bank
A Swedish company – who has been criticised for locating one of its factories in the West Bank – have now moved out of the occupied territory. Part of the world’s largest lock manufacturer Assa Abloy, Mul-T-Lock has switched production away from its factory in the Barkan Industrial Zone in the West Bank to a Israeli city. Assa Abloy had supposedly been the subject of global boycott campaigns because of Mul-T-Lock’s presence in the area. Mul-T-Lock, which manufactures locks and cylinders for security doors, recently confirmed to the pressure group Who Profits that it had moved out of the West Bank. A statement from Who Profits said: “Following several news items regarding the relocation of Mul-T-Lock’s factory from the Barkan settlement to the Israeli city of Yavne, we investigated these reports. “The information was confirmed in a telephone conversation between a Who Profits researcher and the company’s customer service representative. Moreover, the company’s president, Alon Lumbroso, sent an official reply to us stating that “Since December 2011 our company has not carried out any activity in Barkan”.’ Assa Abloy expressed its regrets about Mul-T-Lock’s in appropriate presence in the West Bank as long as four years ago when the situation was revealed in a joint report by the Swedish human-rights group Diakonia, the business-monitoring NGO SwedWatch, and the Church of Sweden. The West Bank, with an estimated population of 2.6 million, is mainly inhibited by Palestinians. The Israeli occupation of the West Bank and their settlements are illegal under international law but Israel ‘disputes’ this.