Israeli PM Netanyahu postpones judicial reform law

27 Mar 2023

Source: Israeli Media

By Al Mayadeen English 

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu suspends his cabinet’s bid to overhaul the judiciary in light of stark tensions in “Israel”.

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, second right, stands on the floor of the Knesset, during a vote as people mass outside to protest his government’s plan to overhaul the judicial system, in occupied Al-Quds, occupied Palestine, March 27, 2023 (AP)

Israeli occupation Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu decided Monday to suspend his cabinet’s plans to reform the judiciary, though he stressed that “we will never give it up.”

Israeli occupation Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu decided Monday to suspend his cabinet’s plans to reform the judiciary, though he stressed that “we will never give it up.”

“There is a minority that is ready to use violence, commit arson, and call for refusing to be drafted into the army,” said Netanyahu. “Israel would not exist without the army.”

“We stand before our brothers, and civil war between brothers is not allowed,” he added during a press conference, stressing the need for dialogue and consultation on the issue of judicial reform.

The decision to suspend the judicial amendments and give dialogue a chance is “at the height of a serious crisis that endangers Israeli unity,” the occupation premier said. “I decided to postpone the second and third readings in the current Knesset session.”

“We have the majority in the street and in the Knesset, and we will not allow the election results to be stolen, and there is a minority ready to tear Israel into pieces,” Netanyahu added.

“Israel cannot exist without the army, and the latter cannot tolerate disobedience,” Netanyahu underlined.

Israeli media reported earlier in the day that Israeli occupation Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Police Minister Itamar Ben-Gvir have agreed to postpone the judicial reform law until the Knesset’s summer session.

“Netanyahu is now holding a meeting with Ben-Gvir and ministers from his Likud party, to discuss developments,” Israeli media added, highlighting that “Netanyahu pledged to Ben-Gvir that the cabinet would approve the establishment of a National Guard as a subordinate to the Police Ministry.”

Ben-Gvir commented on the decision to postpone the decision to reform the judiciary, saying: “Netanyahu pledged that the reform will be proposed in the Knesset in its summer session, even if no agreement was reached about it.”

Furthermore, in response to Netanyahu taking a U-turn, mass demonstrations took place in “Tel Aviv”, and the Histadrut trade union decided to stop the strike it had in place.

Israeli Justice Minister Yariv Levin said, “suspending the judicial reform puts them to bed.”

Former Israeli Security Minister Benny Gantz called on Netanyahu to keep Security Minister Yoav Gallant in his post, while opposition leader Yair Lapid said: “This crisis is the biggest in Israeli history, and we share the responsibility to solve it together.

The Israeli KAN public broadcaster reported that Police Minister Itamar Ben Gvir clashed verbally with Netanyahu, and shouted at him during a meeting between the coalition heads.

Ben-Gvir told Netanyahu earlier in the day, as reported by the Israeli KAN public broadcaster, that he would “resign from the government if the legislation is postponed.” The far-right minister also underlined that he would continue pushing for the judicial overhaul from outside his coalition with Netanyahu.

Israeli media said earlier in the day that Benjamin Netanyahu had “overcome” the obstacles to announcing the freezing of controversial judicial amendments through an agreement he concluded with ministers Ben-Gvir and Levin.

After hours-long deliberations with the government’s coalition parties, Netanyahu left his office to the Knesset in occupied Al-Quds, where thousands are protesting the government’s judicial amendments.

The Israeli Maariv newspaper said Netanyahu would announce a temporary suspension of the judicial reform later in the day.

The Israeli KAN broadcaster highlighted that Lapid told Netanyahu that he was ready to guarantee a safety net for the current government, noting that if one of the government’s parties refuse to postpone legislation and withdraw from the coalition, he would guarantee votes that ensure that the coalition government does not fall for such a reason.

Furthermore, the broadcaster said Gallant would remain in his post if Netanyahu goes back on his decision to sack him.

Netanyahu’s office announced in a brief statement that the Prime Minister has decided to sack Gallant. However, the Times of Israel noted that “it is unclear what new position he will be given, if any.” As per Maariv, Netanyahu now has 48 hours to appoint a new security minister.

According to The Jerusalem Post, Netanyahu told Gallant that he lost his trust in him after he “went behind the government’s back” on Saturday while the occupation Prime Minister was visiting London.

‘Israel’ Eroding From Within

Over the past month, upheaval and chaos took the Israeli occupation entity by storm. Violent clashes erupted between the opposition and police, as Israeli settlers protest against the government’s judicial reforms. Appeals for civil disobedience and riots have been met with stern warnings from both sides, as political rifts are widening and warning against the outbreak of a “civil war”.

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