TEL AVIV, Israel (AP) — Israelis blocked roads on Thursday and overhauled the judicial system in hopes of increasing pressure on lawmakers after parliament reopened this week following a month-long recess. demonstrated against a controversial government plan to
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu suspended overhauls in March after intense pressure and opposition sides trying to reach a compromise agreement. However, tens of thousands of people have continued to protest every Saturday night since then, as a sign of distrust of his intentions.
Thursday’s midweek protests were expected to be small, but demonstrators wanted to remind lawmakers of their presence and their ability to disrupt the country over opposition to the overhaul. ing.
Major roads and intersections, such as in seaside Tel Aviv, were blocked by dozens of Israeli flag-waving protesters. The demonstration took place outside the home of Israel’s Ceremonial President and State Security Minister Itamar Ben-Gubir. He called for Netanyahu to be given power over the new National Guard in exchange for the plan being suspended. militia.
Police said one protester had been arrested for causing the disturbance.
Protest leaders called for “equality” at Thursday’s event, criticizing the rising cost of living in Israel and conscription exemptions given to most ultra-Orthodox Jews. To symbolize the recent rise in milk prices, protesters dyed a puddle in the square of the Israel National Theater in Tel Aviv white.
A plan to reform the country’s judicial system, pushed forward by Israel’s most right-wing government, plunged Israel into one of its worst internal crises, tearing long-standing social rifts and creating new ones. The bill freeze has eased tensions somewhat, but Netanyahu’s allies are urging him to proceed with an overhaul. The ongoing negotiations aimed at paving a way out of the crisis seem to have yielded no results.
Netanyahu, who is on trial for corruption, has faced a barrage of criticism of his legal plans from a wide range of Israeli society, including business leaders, the burgeoning tech sector and military reserves. approved. Only when spontaneous protests erupted after dismissing the opposition defense minister did he relent, a decision later reversed.
Proponents of this plan, which would undermine the powers of the Supreme Court and limit judicial oversight of legislation and government decisions, would curb what they claimed was an interventionist court, allowing elected representatives to He said he needed to regain power.
Opponents say it would overturn Israel’s delicate system of checks and balances and jeopardize the foundations of democracy.
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