Netanyahu vows to continue with legal reforms

World 10:06 24.03.2023
Israel's prime minister has said he will press on with his "responsible legal reforms", despite continuing protests over them.
 
Ednews reports citing Israeli media that the passing of a new law on Thursday that makes it harder for courts to remove a leader deemed unfit for office has angered many people.
 
It is considered to be in the interests of the incumbent, Benjamin Netanyahu, who is on trial for corruption.
 
Hours after the vote, opponents began what they called a "day of paralysis".
 
Tens of thousands of demonstrators gathered in Tel Aviv and other cities, and blocked major roads. A large Israeli flag and a banner with the declaration of independence were also draped over a wall in the Old City of Jerusalem.
 
Police used water cannon and mounted officers to disperse a crowd on a busy Tel Aviv highway and said they had arrested dozens of people across the country for public disturbance.
 
In the evening, protesters began marching towards the ultra-Orthodox Tel Aviv suburb of Bnei Brak, where there is widespread support for the government.
 
Ahead of the event, protesters set up chairs and tables, surrounded by Israeli flags, and invited members of the community to meet them for reconciliation talks about the planned law changes. There were heated conversations.
 
Photos emerged on social media of one of the protest leaders, a doctor, lying bloodied on the ground after being hit by a car. But the organisers later said that it had been an accident, not a deliberate act.
 
In an address on Thursday evening, Mr Netanyahu vowed to "do everything to calm the situation and bring cohesion" and to reach a solution acceptable to both supporters and critics of the proposal.
 
But he vowed to press ahead with the reforms, including plans to give the government full control over the committee which appoints judges, which he has said will pass in the Knesset next week.
 
"We cannot allow any dispute to endanger our collective future," he said.
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