Netanyahu addressed the Israelis after the coalition government he led passed the critical bill on judicial regulation that sparked mass protests across the country today.
The Israeli Prime Minister said in a televised statement that “despite disagreements, the country should remain brotherly”.
Arguing that the bill passed by the Parliament today is “necessary to ensure that the elected government can govern and restore the balance between state organs,” Netanyahu said, “To realize the will of the electorate is certainly not the end of democracy. This is the essence of true democracy,” he said.
Blaming the opposition for the failure to reach a consensus on the controversial judicial regulation, Netanyahu continued as follows:
“Despite everything, we will continue to hold talks and seek consensus. We tried to reach an agreement until the last moment, even in the (Parliamentary) Vote.”
The Israeli Prime Minister stated that they want to “reach a broad consensus on all issues” by the end of November on other draft laws within the scope of judicial regulation and that they will attempt to establish a dialogue with the opposition in the coming days for this purpose.
Addressing “Israel’s enemies” regarding the political crisis in his country, Netanyahu said, “Do not misinterpret our internal conflict. We will stand shoulder to shoulder against any threat to our beloved state.”
The Israeli Assembly will go into summer recess next week and will resume its sessions in October.
Netanyahu’s dialogue statement “lies”, says opposition
Opposition leader Yair Lapid rejected Prime Minister Netanyahu’s proposal to return to the negotiations, saying it was “Blank because it is not within his jurisdiction”.
Former Prime Minister and Yesh Atid (There is a Future) Party leader Lapid used the following statements in a video message he published on his social media account:
“Netanyahu’s offer to return to the negotiations is empty. As anyone involved in attempts to reach broad consensus knows, Benjamin Netanyahu is not actually Israel’s prime minister.
(Justice Minister Yariv) Levin is a prisoner of (far-right coalition partner Simcha) Rothman and (far-right coalition partner Itamar) Ben-Gvir. They decide, he does what they say. The opposition will not participate in these talks, which are just an empty spectacle.”
Pointing out that the US administration is reacting to the Netanyahu government because of the judicial regulation, Lapid continued as follows:
“Netanyahu’s statement tonight is another lie whose sole purpose is to reduce the pressure on Americans and quell the protests.
The extremist and messianic government cannot shatter our democracy at noon and send Netanyahu in the evening to say that he has offered negotiations. They will not make us give up, we will not give up, the struggle has just begun.”
Controversial judicial regulation
The “judicial reform” announced by Israeli Minister of Justice Yariv Levin on January 5 includes various bills 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 led to increasing mass protests and strikes across the country, but announced that they would bring the judicial regulation back to the agenda after the 2023-2024 budget was passed by the Parliament at the end of May.
The government had recently pushed the button again for judicial regulation after negotiations with the opposition stalled.
The draft law that will remove the Supreme Court’s control over the government within the scope of the controversial judicial regulation was accepted in the Parliament today despite all the reactions of the political and social opposition.