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The Media Line: Protest Against Israel’s Controversial Judicial Reforms Needs to Cross Political Blocs, Expert Says (VIDEO)

Protest Against Israel’s Controversial Judicial Reforms Needs to Cross Political Blocs, Expert Says

About 80,000 Israelis gathered in Tel Aviv to demonstrate against the new right-wing government’s plans to make sweeping changes in the judicial system and elsewhere

By Keren Setton/The Media Line 

An estimated 80,000 Israelis took to the streets of Tel Aviv on a rainy Saturday evening to protest government plans to make sweeping reforms in the judicial system.

Critics of the plan claim the changes will undermine Israeli democracy by crippling the Supreme Court and giving limitless power to the government.

Supporters say Israel’s Supreme Court has accumulated too much power in recent decades and inserts itself into political decisions where it should not.

The reforms include giving Israel’s parliament, the Knesset, the ability to override Supreme Court rulings. In addition, politicians will have greater influence in the appointment of Supreme Court judges, and legal advisers to ministries will be allowed to be political appointments.

The massive protest was the first test for the newly sworn-in government led by Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu.

The current Netanyahu government has vowed major reforms in various arenas. The judicial reform is almost the raison d’etre of the coalition and was subject to debate as early as during the election campaign.

https://youtu.be/ibFF46SfvCM

Video: Felice Friedson and Dario Sanchez, with Sara Miller

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