As lockdown eases, Israelis again gather against Netanyahu

By ARIEL SCHALIT
Posted 10/17/20

JERUSALEM (AP) — Thousands of Israelis demonstrated outside the official residence of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Saturday night, resuming the weekly protest against the Israeli leader …

To Our Valued Readers –

Visitors to our website will be limited to five stories per month unless they opt to subscribe.

For $5.99, less than 20 cents a day, subscribers will receive unlimited access to the website, including access to our Daily Independent e-edition, which features Arizona-specific journalism and items you can’t find in our community print products, such as weather reports, comics, crossword puzzles, advice columns and so much more six days a week.

Our commitment to balanced, fair reporting and local coverage provides insight and perspective not found anywhere else.

Your financial commitment will help to preserve the kind of honest journalism produced by our reporters and editors. We trust you agree that independent journalism is an essential component of our democracy. Please click here to subscribe.

Sincerely,
Charlene Bisson, Publisher, Independent Newsmedia

Please log in to continue

Log in
I am anchor

As lockdown eases, Israelis again gather against Netanyahu

Posted

JERUSALEM (AP) — Thousands of Israelis demonstrated outside the official residence of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Saturday night, resuming the weekly protest against the Israeli leader after emergency restrictions imposed as part of a coronavirus lockdown were lifted.

The protests were curtailed last month after Israel imposed new lockdown measures in response to a new virus outbreak. The emergency regulations blocked Israelis from traveling to Jerusalem to protest and allowed people only to attend smaller demonstrations within one kilometer (half a mile) of their home.

The protesters gathered in central Jerusalem and marched to Netanyahu’s official residence, holding banners calling on him to go and shouting “Revolution!” Many blew horns and pounded on drums, while others hoisted Israeli flags. Scores of smaller demonstrations were held across the country, and organizers claimed some 260,000 people participated nationwide.

The protesters say Netanyahu must resign, calling him unfit to lead the country while he is on trial for corruption charges. They also say he has mishandled the virus crisis, which has sent unemployment soaring.

Netanyahu is on trial for fraud, breach of trust and accepting bribes for his role in a series of scandals. He has denied the charges and said he is the victim of a conspiracy by overzealous police and prosecutors and a liberal media.

Israeli media reported several incidents of violence by far-right counter-demonstrators. In the northern city of Haifa, police said they arrested three people suspected of using pepper spray on demonstrators.

Earlier this year, Israel managed to contain the virus outbreak by sealing its borders and imposing a strict lockdown. But a quick reopening of the economy led to a rise in cases, forcing a second lockdown.

Health officials say the new restrictions have brought the infection rate down, and Israel is set to begin easing the lockdown on Sunday by reopening daycare centers and some businesses. A full reopening is expected to take several months.

Unemployment, including people on open-ended furloughs, has soared to nearly 25%, according to government figures. Many of the protesters include business owners, entrepreneurs and workers who lost their jobs.

Comments