Israelis Protest Netanyahu’s Rejection of Reformist Settlement
Israeli protesters returned to the streets on Thursday after Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu rejected a compromise plan on judicial reforms presented by the country’s president.
The banner held by the demonstrators in Tel Aviv said that the controversial reforms, many of which have already been approved by parliament, are “the end of democracy.”
“I am afraid that we will become a religious state and that the laws of Judaism will come first and that the democratic freedom that we have will not exist anymore,” Liat Zvi, a researcher at Tel Aviv University, told AFP. (AFP).
Demonstrators also gathered in Jerusalem and the northern city of Haifa to denounce the reform that would, among other things, allow lawmakers to overturn Supreme Court rulings by a simple majority.
Since Netanyahu’s far-right government announced the reforms in January, a month after taking power, massive demonstrations have taken place regularly across Israel.
Opponents of the deal have also accused Netanyahu, who faces a series of corruption allegations, of trying to use reforms to overturn possible sentences against him.
President Isaac Herzog earlier Wednesday submitted a compromise proposal on reforms, but it was promptly rejected by the government.
“Anyone who thinks a real civil war, with human lives, is a line we can never cross has no idea what they’re talking about,” Herzog said.
“As for the compromise that the president offered, I think any attempt to reach an agreement and dialogue is certainly welcome,” Netanyahu later told reporters.
He added, “But what the president proposed was not accepted by the representatives of the ruling coalition. The main points of his program perpetuate the existing conditions and do not achieve the required balance between the authorities.”
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