Thousands Take to Israels Streets Mass Protests Again Against Judicial

Thousands Take to Israel’s Streets: Mass Protests Again Against Judicial Reform |

From: 03/18/2023 21:43

Thousands of people in Israel have again protested against the right-wing religious government’s controversial judicial reform. In central Tel Aviv, they took to the streets for the eleventh consecutive Saturday – there were also protests in other cities.

For the eleventh consecutive weekend, thousands of people demonstrated in Israel against the planned judicial reforms. They marched through the streets of Tel Aviv with Israeli flags and protest signs. Waving the Israeli flag and rainbow flags, they blocked traffic and chanted slogans such as “Save Democracy!”

According to Israeli media, people took to the streets in more than 100 cities – including Haifa and Jerusalem.

All accuse the government of conservatives, religious fundamentalists and right-wing nationalists of jeopardizing the democratic control of ministers by the courts with a controversial judicial reform. Therefore, the future of Israeli democracy is at stake.

Politics should have more influence in the judiciary

The planned reform should allow Parliament, among other things, to overrule Supreme Court decisions by a simple majority. In addition, politicians should have more influence in the appointment of judges. The coalition wants to pass key elements of the controversial reform under fast-track procedures by the end of the month. Critics see the separation of powers as an endangered pillar of democracy and warn of a dangerous crisis of the state.

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s Likud party, on the other hand, accuses the Supreme Court of being dominated by leftist judges who, for political reasons, meddle in areas outside their jurisdiction. And personal motives may also play a role: Netanyahu himself is on trial on corruption charges.

Alternative already rejected

President Isaac Herzog called for the reform to be postponed and recently presented his own plan. However, this was rejected by Netanyahu. On Thursday, Chancellor Olaf Scholz expressed concern about the project at a press conference with Netanyahu in Berlin.

The protest movement is one of the largest in Israel’s history and encompasses wide sectors of society. There is also growing resistance from the army. Hundreds of elite reserve military officers, for example, announced that they would no longer report for duty as of Sunday.