Saturday, January 16, 2010

Raytheon to leave Derry

Raytheon, the arms manufacturer, has confirmed that it is leaving Derry. This is a major triumph for the campaigners and shows what one can do through protest. Tom Mellen writes: "US arms manufacturer Raytheon has confirmed that it would close its plant in Derry following several years of militant anti-war protests inside and outside the facility. Raytheon Business Development spokesman Robin Hughes said that the Massachusetts-based corporation would not renew its lease at the Northern Ireland Systems and Software Centre in Springtown and that it would be pulling out on February 15. Raytheon opened its Derry operation, which focused on software development for missile systems, in 1999 with a staff of 50. In recent years the number had declined to just seven.Mr Hughes said that the 'seven employees impacted by this action will be provided assistance on an individual basis by the company through the transition process.' Raytheon had repeatedly denied claims that its Derry plant made components for bunker bombs deployed by the Israeli military against civilians in Gaza. But in 2006 Derry city councillors distanced themselves from Raytheon following several visits to the plant and meetings with bosses", more. Departure date is set for 15 February 2010.