(Tel-Aviv) Thousands of Israelis gathered again Saturday in different cities of Israel, as for 18 weeks, to mark their opposition to the judicial reform project of the government of Binyamin Netanyahu, denouncing in addition the economic impact of the current status quo.
Several hundred people demonstrated in Rehovot, a medium-sized city in central Israel, waving the national flag and blocking a traffic junction. But, as often, it was in Tel Aviv, the large coastal city, that the opponents were the most numerous, noted an AFP journalist.
After gathering in Habima Square, the thousands of demonstrators marched towards Kaplan Street, again waving Israeli flags and singing songs hostile to Prime Minister Netanyahu.
“Minister of the National Fiasco,” read a sign bearing the likeness of Public Security Minister Itamar Ben Gvir (far right), held up by a protester.
Police do not provide official figures on the number of participants in the protests, which began in January in the wake of the announcement of the plan by the Netanyahu government, one of the most right-wing in Israel’s history.
For him, the text aims, among other things, to rebalance the powers by reducing the prerogatives of the Supreme Court, which the executive considers politicized, for the benefit of Parliament. Critics of the reform believe, on the contrary, that it risks leading to an illiberal drift.
On March 27, Benyamin Netanyahu announced a “pause” to give a “chance […] to dialogue”, but the mobilization has not run out of steam so far.
In a statement on Saturday, rally organizers again accused the prime minister of wanting to turn Israel into a “dangerous and messianic dictatorship.”
“As long as talks continue at the president’s residence, no investment comes into Israel and the economy collapses,” they said.
The President of the State of Israel Isaac Herzog has been negotiating for a month with government and opposition representatives in order to reach a compromise on the terms of this reform, but without announcing any progress to date. .
Thursday, during previous rallies, anti-reform protesters had already added other slogans such as the high cost of living or equality in the face of military service, from which the ultra-Orthodox are exempt.
Supporters of judicial reform massively mobilized on April 27 in Jerusalem, at the call of the ruling coalition.