Google fires 28 pro-Palestine workers for protesting contract with Israel

New York, New York - Google fired 28 employees following a disruptive sit-down protest over the tech giant's contract with the Israeli government, a Google spokesperson said Thursday.

Google fired 28 employees following a disruptive sit-down protest over the tech giant's contract with the Israeli government.
Google fired 28 employees following a disruptive sit-down protest over the tech giant's contract with the Israeli government.  © MICHAEL M. SANTIAGO / GETTY IMAGES NORTH AMERICA / GETTY IMAGES VIA AFP

The Tuesday demonstration was organized by the group No Tech for Apartheid, which has long opposed Project Nimbus, Google's joint $1.2 billion contract with Amazon to provide cloud services to the government of Israel.

Video of the demonstration showed police arresting Google workers in Sunnyvale, California, in the office of Google Cloud CEO Thomas Kurian, according to a post by the advocacy group on X, formerly Twitter.

Kurian's office was occupied for 10 hours, the advocacy group said.

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Workers held signs including "Googlers against Genocide," a reference to accusations surrounding Israel's assault on Gaza.

No Tech for Apartheid, which also held protests in New York and Seattle, pointed to an April 12 Time magazine article reporting a draft contract of Google billing the Israeli Ministry of Defense more than $1 million for consulting services.

A "small number" of employees "disrupted" a few Google locations, but the protests are "part of a longstanding campaign by a group of organizations and people who largely don't work at Google," a Google spokesperson said.

Google retaliates after employees protest involvement with Israeli government

"After refusing multiple requests to leave the premises, law enforcement was engaged to remove them to ensure office safety," the Google spokesperson said. "We have so far concluded individual investigations that resulted in the termination of employment for 28 employees and will continue to investigate and take action as needed."

Israel is one of "numerous" governments for which Google provides cloud computing services, the Google spokesperson said.

"This work is not directed at highly sensitive, classified, or military workloads relevant to weapons or intelligence services," the Google spokesperson said.

Cover photo: MICHAEL M. SANTIAGO / GETTY IMAGES NORTH AMERICA / GETTY IMAGES VIA AFP

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