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The Media Line: Examining Israeli President’s Judicial Reform Compromise Snubbed by Both Sides

Examining Israeli President’s Judicial Reform Compromise Snubbed by Both Sides

Under massive public pressure, PM Binyamin Netanyahu could decide to soften the judicial reforms or forfeit certain parts

By Keren Setton/The Media Line 

Israeli Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu was quick to reject a proposal by the country’s president, Isaac Herzog, on the judicial reform legislation that has been roiling the country.

In presenting the “People’s Directive” in a national address on Wednesday evening, Herzog said that Israel is on the cusp of civil war and urged both the government and the opposition to accept his compromise. But minutes after it was made public, Netanyahu said his coalition could not accept its terms.

“Any attempt to reach an agreement is commendable,” he said before departing on a state visit to Germany, adding that: “Central parts of the proposal only perpetuate the current status and do not bring the necessary balance desired between the branches.”

On Thursday, the leaders of five of the opposition parties held a news conference in which they agreed to accept the compromise proposal presented by Herzog, and criticized the opposition for rejecting it out of hand.

The judicial overhaul is the centerpiece of the Netanyahu government, which was sworn in late last year. Since it was announced, the coalition has been swiftly promoting a legislative process that will significantly change the Israeli judicial system. Those in favor of the reforms say they are a necessity in a country in which the courts have accumulated too much clout, often inserting themselves into the political debate and influencing outcomes.

Opponents say the reforms are no less than a constitutional coup aimed at turning Israel into a dictatorship.

Link to “People’s Directive”:’s%20Directive.pdf

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