Assa Abloy criticized for West Bank plant

Assa Abloy criticized for West Bank plant
Swedish lock maker Assa Abloy has come under fire from several Swedish aid organizations for a factory it owns which sits in a disputed Israeli settlement on the West Bank.

According to report from Diakonia, Swedwatch, and the Swedish Church, the factory sits on territory illegally occupied by Israel.

The groups are demanding that the Assa Abloy have the factory moved from the Barkan industrial area, which sits in the Israeli settlement of Ariel, the groups say in a statement.

They want the factory to be moved to a place where international law is respected.

“When Assa Abloy chooses to invest via an illegal settlement, they are also investing in the continuing human suffering, for both Israelis and Palestinians. It also means that a Swedish company is working against the peace process, as settlement policies are one of the largest obstacles to this process,” said Diakonia secretary general Bo Forsberg in a statement.

Assa Abloy said it has studied the report about the Barkan factory. As a result, the company has launched an internal investigation to study the prerequisites for moving the factory, the company said in a statement.

The factory is run by Israel-based Mul-T Lock, a subsidiary of Assa Abloy which the Swedish lock maker purchased in 2000.