Crime & Justice

Protests against judicial reform in Israel resume after Jewish New Year

Jerusalem, Sept 17 (EFE) – After the Jewish New Year celebrations, thousands of people took to the streets across Israel on Sunday to protest for the 37th consecutive week against the Benjamin Netanyahu government’s judicial reform.

As has been the norm since the protests began in January – the largest in the country’s history – the biggest mobilization was seen in Tel Aviv, but there were also demonstrations in the Old City of Jerusalem and other places.

Hundreds of protesters also gathered at Tel Aviv’s Ben-Gurion International Airport, where Netanyahu departed for the United States on an official diplomatic visit that will include a speech at the United Nations General Assembly next week.

The demonstrations usually take place on Saturday night, after Shabbat (the Jewish day of rest), but this week they were postponed because of the Jewish New Year holiday (Rosh Hashanah), which began on Friday and ended on Sunday afternoon.

Israel has been experiencing an unprecedented political crisis since January, when Netanyahu’s government – the most right-wing in the country’s history – announced its controversial judicial reform.

The crisis reached a climax on Tuesday when the Supreme Court’s 15 members reviewed appeals against a law passed in July that is part of the reform plan.

This law, considered the main axis of Netanyahu’s judicial reform, abolished the so-called doctrine of reasonableness, which gave the Supreme Court the power to modify or overturn government decisions based on whether it deemed them reasonable or not.

Critics note that the bill destroys Israel’s formal democratic foundations by eliminating judicial independence and the separation of powers.

It is not known when the Supreme Court will issue a ruling after Tuesday’s lengthy hearing, which has captured the attention of an increasingly polarized country divided between supporters and opponents of the controversial plan.

Part of the debate centers on whether the Supreme Court has the authority to overturn or intervene in the approved legislation.

The controversial bill was passed as an amendment to one of Israel’s constitutional laws, leading to a discussion about the principles of the Israeli Declaration of Independence itself, which marked the creation of the state in 1948.

In light of this, many demonstrators came to Sunday’s protests with large copies of the Declaration of Independence, claiming the judicial reform would change Israel’s founding principles, while also invoking historic leader David Ben-Gurion, Israel’s founder. EFE


Related Articles

Back to top button