100,000 people took to the streets in the capital Tel Aviv against PM Benjamin Netanyahu’s major proposed judicial reforms in a “fight for Israel’s destiny”.
As many as 100,000 people packed the streets of the capital Tel Aviv against PM Benjamin Netanyahu’s proposed judicial reforms.
Described by the protesters as a “fight for Israel’s destiny”, it is one of the biggest anti government protests in the past decade.
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s government and its supporters have accused the country’s supreme court of a left-wing bias and of overstepping its authority.
Seeking to curb the supreme court’s powers by restricting the ability to overturn laws and decisions, the administration hopes for gaining more power in judicial appointments.
Benjamin Netanyahu, who returned to office last month is supported by a coalition of mainly conservative and religious parties making it the most right-wing government in Israel’s history.
Protesters demonstrated in the cities of Jerusalem, Haifa, and Beersheba as well.
The PM has defended these proposed changes and is himself on a trial for corruption charges. The opposition has argued that these proposed changes will help him evade these charges.
Israel doesn’t have a formal constitution and hence the supreme court plays a role in maintaining a system which checks and balances the government ministers.
Former Prime Minister and opposition leader, Yair Lapid along with various politicians across all ideologies addressed the protesters in Tel Aviv.
“People who love the country came to defend its democracy and its courts,” he said. “We won’t give up until win.”
The crowd could be seen holding placards saying “No to Dictatorship” and much more while waving the national blue and white flag.
The protesters are also demonstrating against the coalition which contains parties that are openly racist, homophobic, misogynistic, and anti-Palestinian.
The administration, when it took office, immediately declared ‘exclusive’ Jewish rights to all parts of the land along with Palestinian occupied territories.
Netanyahu has however dismissed the protesters saying that they are denying the will of the voters. Saying that millions voted for a change in the judicial system.
“I must say that when we were in the opposition, we did not call for civil war and did not speak about the destruction of the state… I expect the leaders of the opposition to do the same,” he added.
Even though the protesters demonstrated in large numbers, they now comprise in margins across the country compared to the ever-growing right-wing supporters.