Protest leaders vowed on Tuesday to intensify their larger anti-government demonstrations, including a blockade of Ben Gurion airport, next week.
Although protesters have toned down their fire somewhat in recent months, while the judicial review law has been put on hold, organizers said the government has now begun to make progress with some elements of the plan in the Knesset (the Israeli parliament). have done so, they will renew the efforts.
At a press conference on Tuesday, prominent protest leaders announced that they plan to blockade Ben Gurion Airport next Monday, and that they will consider further actions in the future.
Shikma Bressler, one of the organizers of the protests, said that the massive national “disengagement days” that used to be held weekly could now become a daily event.
“We promise those who are destroying the country – (Prime Minister Benjamin) Netanyahu and (Justice Minister Yariv) Levin – will be surprised. Bressler warned, all groups participating in the fighting will take resistance actions at their own discretion. do.
In response, the Jewish State’s Minister of Tourism, Haim Katz, sent a letter to the Minister of National Security, Itamar Ben Gvir, and the Attorney General, Gali Baharao-Miara, to prevent protesters from blocking airport entrances and exits.
“The right to protest and demonstrate is sacred, but blocking the country’s main entrances and exits is a disproportionate measure that threatens to seriously impair freedom of movement,” Katz said.
With the school year ending later this week, airport traffic is expected to increase next week as Israeli families leave for their summer holidays.
The announcement from protest leaders came hours after furious demonstrations outside Levin’s home in Modine, which included burning tires and blocking roads.
The press conference was also held a day after a large rally in Petah Tikva following the arrest of an anti-reform activist at his home.
On Tuesday, hundreds of reservists from an elite unit of the Israel Air Force (IAF) signed a letter warning that they would refuse to volunteer if judicial reform goes ahead, The Times of Israel reported.
“As long as unilateral steps to remove democratic rule continue, we will immediately stop volunteering for active duty,” the reservists said in the letter.
In March, 37 of 40 reserve pilots in a fighter squadron refused to undergo training on judicial reform.
The Army, for its part, responded that it would discipline soldiers who refuse to report for duty, but stressed that no action would be taken against reservists who simply do not report at this stage. threatening to do.
Sources in the Israel Defense Forces (IDF) told reporters that there is a difference between actual denial and signing a petition threatening to deny.
After months of more subdued protests, during which reform talks took place at President Isaac Herzog’s residence, the Israeli government is moving forward with parts of its plan to overhaul the judiciary.
On Tuesday, the Knesset’s Constitution, Law and Justice Council met for further deliberations on a bill to prevent judges from exercising judicial control over the “reasonableness” of government decisions. Official coalition figures promised to pass the law in a month before the summer recess of the Knesset.