Israelis, who hold mass demonstrations across the country every Saturday evening against the judicial regulation of the extreme right-wing coalition government led by Prime Minister Netanyahu, again went down to the squares.
Tens of thousands of Israelis participated in demonstrations in cities such as Tel Aviv, West Jerusalem, Haifa, Ra’anana and Netanya.
450 thousand Israelis participated in the demonstrations
The “Umbrella Movement”, one of the groups that organized the protests, announced in a written statement that “230,000 people in Tel Aviv and more than 450 thousand people across the country took to the streets in the 13th week of the demonstrations held all over Israel to defend democracy.”
In the statement, Prime Minister Netanyahu’s decision to postpone the judicial regulation and stating that “the attempt to put the protesters to sleep failed”, the Umbrella Movement said, “We will continue to be on the streets until we guarantee that Israel is a democratic state.”
Tens of thousands of protesters gathered in front of the Government Complex on Kaplan Street in Tel Aviv, which hosts the largest demonstration, as it does every week.
Giant banners with the inscription “Crime Minister” in English were hung in the area where the demonstrations were held, against Netanyahu’s prime ministership.
On the stage set in the square, names from different segments of Israel such as politics, art and business gave pro-democracy speeches. The demonstrators supported the speakers with slogans by watching the giant screens installed on the surrounding main streets.
The demonstrators, who often chanted “democracy” with Israeli flags in their hands, carried banners criticizing the extreme right-wing politicians in the coalition government.
The presence of US flags in this week’s demonstrations also drew attention. A large number of demonstrators carrying the Israeli flag and the US flag drew attention after US President Joe Biden’s remarks that the government is “very worried about the judicial regulation and Israel cannot continue on this path”.
A group of demonstrators in Tel Aviv closed the city’s central Ayalon Highway, while Israeli police used mounted troops and water cannons to disperse the protesters.
Israeli media reported that the police, who intervened in the demonstrators, detained 19 people.
Thousands of demonstrators in West Jerusalem also gathered in front of the Presidential Residence to protest the judicial arrangement.
Opposition leader Lapid: “We are still on watch. The danger has not passed yet”
Yair Lapid, leader of the main opposition There Is a Future Party and former Prime Minister, reiterated his support for the protests against judicial regulation.
Lapid, in a statement on his Twitter account, shared photos from the show he attended and said, “We are still on watch. The danger has not passed yet.” made statements.
Postponed judicial regulation
The “judicial reform” announced by Israeli Minister of Justice Yariv Levin on January 5 includes changes such as limiting the powers of the Supreme Court and the power to have a say in judicial appointments.
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu announced on March 27 that he postponed the judicial regulation, which caused mass protests and strikes across the country.