Tens of thousands take to streets in Israel’s Tel Aviv after overhaul law passed

Tens of thousands take to streets in Israel’s Tel Aviv after overhaul law passed

Nationwide protests oppose coalition government for passing bill that removes Supreme Court's oversight on government as part of judicial reform

By Enes Canlı

TEL AVIV (AA) - Israelis marched Saturday in Tel Aviv for the 30th consecutive week, marking the first time since the initial passage of judicial overhaul legislation by the Netanyahu government.

Hundreds of thousands of Israelis participated in demonstrations at dozens of points across the country, including Tel Aviv, West Jerusalem, Haifa, Birussebi, Herzliya and Rehovot.

Shikhma Bressler, a leader of the protest against the government, called for increased resistance after the government passed the judicial reform law in parliament.

Protesters blocked a highway near Karkur junction in northern Israel while opposition leaders joined protests in different parts of the country.

Israel's parliament, or the Knesset, approved an initial bill Monday to limit the Supreme Court's powers, despite facing months of protests.

Justice Minister Yariv Levin announced Jan. 5 a judicial reform which included measures like reducing the Supreme Court's authority and giving the government more control over judicial appointments.

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu initially postponed the reform on March 27 due to widespread protests and strikes. But he said it would be revisited after the approval of the 2023-2024 budget in late May.

Following stalled negotiations with the opposition, the government recently restarted the reform process.

As part of the reform, the government announced its intention to bring a bill to the Knesset for a second and third vote on July 24 to eliminate the Supreme Court's oversight of the government.

In response to the reform, thousands of Israelis, including war pilots, submarine officers and other elite units, who opposed the changes, decided to resign from voluntary reserve service.

*Writing by Necva Tastan

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