March 30, 2023


President of Israel Isaac Herzog warned that the Jewish state was on the verge of civil war because of the government’s proposed judicial reforms. Amid nationwide protests, he presented a series of alternative reforms that were rejected by the prime minister. Benjamin Netanyahu.

“Those who think that a real civil war with human lives is a border that we will not cross are greatly mistaken,” Herzog said in a video message to the people. “The abyss is at arm’s length. I will not let the country fall into it at any cost and by any means.”

What are we talking about?

Let me remind you that Israel has been shaken by continuous protests.

Legislative changes drafted by the government would allow the country’s parliament to overturn Supreme Court decisions with a simple majority vote, give the cabinet more power to appoint judges, and limit the court’s ability to review legislation it deems “unreasonable.”

This week, on Tuesday, Israel’s parliament voted to pass a bill that would allow lawmakers to overturn the ordinances. The vote came after hundreds of thousands of demonstrators took to the streets of Tel Aviv, Jerusalem, Haifa and other Israeli cities over the weekend to protest its passage.

Herzog, whose role is mostly ceremonial, responded by proposing an alternative package of reforms. His plan still forbids the court from revising legislation it considers “unreasonable” but would allow Parliament’s decisions to be overturned by a two-thirds majority of the judges. Among other compromises, it would also allow Parliament to overrule ordinances, but only with the consent of the other branch of government.

The prime minister rejected the presidential plan, telling reporters that it would “only perpetuate the existing situation.” After this statement, protests flared up with renewed vigor. Demonstrators even tried to disrupt Netanyahu’s planned trip to Berlin by gathering at Tel Aviv’s Ben Gurion Airport.

Critics of the prime minister argue that the change in law would allow Netanyahu to “rule like an authoritarian ruler” and attempt to “push through legislation” protecting him from ongoing corruption investigations. Last week, President Herzog sided with the dissenters, calling the reforms “repressive” and anti-democratic.

In a speech ahead of Tuesday’s vote, he said the reforms had caused a “constitutional and social crisis” and must be ended before Israel suffers “diplomatic, economic, social and security implications.”

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Curator Lyubov Stepushova

Lyubov Alexandrovna Stepushova – columnist for Pravda.Ru

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