8 Charged After Pro-Palestinian Activists Staged 12-Hour Stand-Off on Rooftop

The activists were seen wearing black clothing and masks on a roof at a defence company.
8 Charged After Pro-Palestinian Activists Staged 12-Hour Stand-Off on Rooftop
People march with flags and placards during a rally in support of the Palestinian people in Sydney on November 19, 2023. Thousands of civilians, both Palestinians and Israelis, have died since October 7, 2023, after Palestinian Hamas militants based in the Gaza Strip entered southern Israel in an unprecedented attack triggering a war declared by Israel on Hamas with retaliatory bombings on Gaza. (Photo by Saeed Khan / AFP) (Photo by SAEED KHAN/AFP via Getty Images)
Monica O’Shea

Pro-Palestinian protesters have been charged following a 12-hour stand-off on a roof at a defence and advanced manufacturing company in Bayswater, Melbourne.

The activists wearing black were seen on the roof of the Rosebank Engineering building on Mountain Highway waving their hands and chanting.

The building was spray painted in red with a sign stating “cancel all F35 contracts” seen on the front of the factory, referring to the F-35 fighter jets parts that are bound for Israel.

On the roof, banners in black and white were seen with the words “hands off Rafah,” “no contracts with Israel,” and  “war profiteers—your tax dollars making a killing.”

Victorian police said they charged eight people, including seven women and one man.

“It is believed the group climbed the roof of a Mountain Highway business about 6 a.m., before allegedly refusing to come down for a number of hours,” police said.

“The group engaged with police late Monday afternoon, and advised they were ready to come down from the roof.

“Officers organised a cherry picker to ensure those involved were brought to the ground safely. No one was injured.”

Victorian Police said all of these individuals have been charged with alleged criminal damage, trespassing, and being disguised with unlawful intent.

They include two women from the Melbourne suburb of Carlton aged 62 and 36, two women aged 27 from Thornbury, and Eltham and a 32 year-old woman from Hadfield.

A woman aged 52 from Ocean Shores, New South Wales, and a 26 year-old Fitzroy man were also charged.

All have been granted bail and are due to face the Ringwood Magistrates Court on July 11.

The pro-Palestinian activists claimed the business supplied weapon parts for Israel and was demanding that the workers refuse to manufacture F-35 parts.

“Eight pro-Palestinian activists entering the eighth hour on the roof of Rosebank asking workers to refuse to manufacture F-35 parts bound for Israel and for the government to cancel all weapons contracts and F-35 parts contracts to be exported for use by Israel,” the Whistleblowers, Activists and Communities Alliance posted to X on Feb. 19.
Later in the day, the alliance posted to X, “Cherry picker on-site beginning to bring down our mates. Epic effort shutting down Rosebank...

“Everyone is down, all eight protestors now being taken to cop shop,” the group said.

Hamas launched an attack on Israel on Oct. 7, murdering at least 1,200 people and kidnapping hundreds of hostages including women and children. Since then, 29,092 Palestinian people have died in Gaza, according to the Hamas-run health ministry.

New York Rush Hour Protest Leads to Arrests

Meanwhile, in New York, multiple arrests were made in Manhattan on Feb. 16 after some pro-Palestinian protestors refused to leave the street.
The activists, including high school students and college students, marched the streets during rush hour shouting “free Palestine” while others chanted the phrase, “from the land to the sea, Palestine will be free,” the New York Post reported.

The students participating in the protests came from institutions including the School of Visual Arts (SVA), Hunter College, Midwood High School, Fort Hamilton High School, the City University of New York (CUNY) and New York University.

One large banner at the scene said “SVA Students against Genocide,” while others seen at the site included “ceasefire now” and “CUNY students stand in solidarity.”

Never Again Rally In Sydney

Meanwhile, a multi-faith rally of more than 10,000 people was held in Sydney on Feb. 18 to support the Jewish community and the rise against anti-Semitism.

High profile speakers at the Never Again is Now (NAIN) event included former Prime Minister Scott Morrison and Aboriginal leader Warren Mundine.

Mr. Morrison accused the United Nations of anti-Semitism during a speech at the event, held in The Domain in Sydney.

“Applying double standards by requiring of Israel a behaviour not expected or demanded of any other democratic nation, that is anti-Semitism. And we have seen that in the United Nations,” Mr. Morrison said.

“We said there would be never again after the Holocaust, but in one single day, an atrocity was committed on the people of Israel on a level that we had not seen the Holocaust.

“At the heart of never again is the commitment to be extremely vigilant in the struggle against anti-Semitism, which brings us all here together today. To our Jewish friends here today, we honour you, we honour you as fellow Australians for your contribution to our shared Commonwealth.”

Shadow Foreign Minister Simon Birmingham will be speaking at an Adelaide event on March 3, Never Again is Now announced on Feb. 19. Rallies are also planned in Melbourne, Canberra, Perth, Hobart and Brisbane

Monica O’Shea is a reporter based in Australia. She previously worked as a reporter for Motley Fool Australia, Daily Mail Australia, and Fairfax Regional Media.
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