A human tide of more than 120,000 people flooded the streets of Tel Aviv to protest against “undemocratic policies” and “fascistsof the new government of Benjamin Netanyahuthe most far-right and religious in the history of Israel.
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The massive influx exceeded the expectations of the organizers, who aspired to gather some 100,000 protesters after gathering 80,000 last Saturday. In addition, some 4,000 people protested in Jerusalem, 6,000 in Haifa and 1,000 in Beersheva, according to police estimates.
“Our children and grandchildren have the right to live in a democratic country. There are many extremist, religious, almost messianic currents in this government. When I came to this country, it was essentially a secular nation, where you could live freely. But now they are curtailing our rights.”complained Diego, an Argentine-Israeli scientist who settled in the country in 1987.
Diego carried the Israeli banner along with a black flag, a symbol of the protests against Netanyahu during his previous government, which called for his resignation after being accused of corruption. “We managed a political wave that threw him out of government, but stupid decisions on the left and shortsightedness brought the fascists back,” he lamented.
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AGAINST JUDICIAL REFORM
The controversial judicial reform, which is already advancing in the Knesset (Israeli Parliament) with the aim of undermining the independence of Justice, and the disqualification by the Supreme Court of the ultra-Orthodox leader Aryeh Deri from being a minister, while he continues to cling to the position seeking the way to circumvent the decision, have been the triggers that have encouraged more Israelis to take to the streets for the third consecutive Saturday.
This reform seeks that a simple majority of legislators can reverse sentences or decisions of the Supreme Court, and that the high court loses the ability to review the appointments of senior government officials in the event that they fail to comply with the law, which will shake the foundations of democracy. and the separation of powers.
“The corrupt do not appoint judges”, “Bibi=Putin” either “Human rights are for everyone” are some of the posters that were read in the demonstrations, in which “Democracy” and “Israel is not a dictatorship” were shouted.
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Opposition politicians from all political persuasions joined the demonstrations from the very beginning and former Prime Minister and opposition leader Yair Lapid attended for the first time today.
“People who love the country have come to defend its democracy, its courts, its idea of coexistence and the common good”Lapid cried out to the masses and promised “Do not give up until the final victory.”
The nucleus of the protests was the central Habima square in Tel Aviv, where the Movement for a Quality Government in Israel (MGCI) called under the slogan “Freedom, equality and quality of government” to stop “the dangerous revolution of the new Executive that will destroy Israeli democracy”they affirmed in their call to the population.
Other civil society organizations such as Banderas Negras, the student movement or LGTBI groups called on the nearby Kaplan avenue to allow more people to come in, since Habima was overwhelmed last Saturday when more than 80,000 people joined the demonstrations to despite the rain
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Along with the hundreds of Israeli flags that flew in the center of Tel Aviv, many protesters also raised the rainbow flag, emblem of the LGTBI community, which is threatened under this new government.
In addition to the homophobic rhetoric of some far-right ministers – they have even threatened to ban the Pride Parade – they have proposed a legal clause that allows professionals, including doctors, to refuse to provide services to people who violate their religious beliefs , which would affect this group.
“It is discouraging and sad. The change starts with power, with new laws in the Knesset, but then it will hit the streets. We don’t want it to happen, we want people to respect us, us and the rest of the minorities.”said Idan, a 25-year-old gay man who works in the burgeoning high-tech industry.
Idan, who demonstrated last Saturday for the first time in his life for a “democratic, liberal and strong” Israel, is especially concerned about judicial reform and the reduction of the powers of the Supreme Court, since it is the court that “protects the minority rights”.
Given the estimates that the protests would be more massive than the previous Saturday -among other things due to the better weather forecast-, the police deployed more than 1,000 agents throughout Tel Aviv to ensure that they pass without incident and for fear that counter-protesters Right-wing pro-government groups tried to boycott the demonstrations, although they took place without incident. EFE
I am Jack Morton and I work in 24 News Recorder. I mostly cover world news and I have also authored 24 news recorder. I find this work highly interesting and it allows me to keep up with current events happening around the world.