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Israeli labor union federation calls for general strike if judicial overhaul not halted

Israeli labor union federation calls for general strike if judicial overhaul not halted
Tensions mount in Israel amid mass protests against government's judicial reform plan

By Abdelraouf Arnaout

JERUSALEM (AA) - Israel's national public worker union federation threatened on Monday to launch a general strike if Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu did not halt the judicial reform plan.

"This is the right time for us to say our word," Arnon Bar-David, head of the Histadrut labor federation, said at a press conference, the Israeli Broadcasting Authority reported.

"I tried to avoid strikes and closures, but we cannot survive in the face of this polarization," he added.

On Sunday evening, Netanyahu dismissed Defense Minister Yoav Gallant, a day after the defense chief called on the government to halt the controversial judicial overhaul.

Israel witnessed protests late on Sunday that lasted until dawn on the next day.

Mass protests have been roiling the country over the past 12 weeks against plans by the government for introduce judicial reforms seen by the opposition as a power grab in favor of the executive authority.

Netanyahu decided to fire the defense minister a day after Gallant urged him to pause the judicial overhaul plan.

On trial for corruption, the prime minister claims that his plan would enhance democracy and restore the balance between the legislative, executive, and judicial branches of government.

*Writing by Mahmoud Barakat

source: News Feed
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