Anti-overhaul activists tie themselves together, block road near ministries; 10 held

Group says it’s trying to prevent country ‘racing toward a messianic dictatorship’ as they obstruct thoroughfare leading to a number of government buildings in Jerusalem

Protesters against the judicial overhaul block a road near the government complex in Jerusalem, March 14, 2023 (Yonatan Sindel/Flash90)
Protesters against the judicial overhaul block a road near the government complex in Jerusalem, March 14, 2023 (Yonatan Sindel/Flash90)

Around 20 activists protesting the government’s judicial overhaul blocked the street at the entrance to a number of government offices in Jerusalem on Tuesday morning.

The activists tied themselves to each other using plastic tubing, blocking the way for staffers trying to enter offices belonging to the interior, finance and economy ministries on Bank Israel Street in the capital.

The activists carried signs saying “Who are you working for?” in an apparent message to civil servants.

“Stop racing toward a messianic dictatorship and start establishing a real democracy. Until then, we will continue to block the overhaul with our bodies,” the organizers said in a statement.

After the group from the “Blocking the overhaul” collective refused to leave for around two hours, police officers said they used force to remove them.

Video showed police pulling the protesters apart.

Ten people were detained for questioning.

The action came hours after the Knesset advanced a key bill that would allow imbuing laws with preemptive immunity against judicial review, placing the bulk of the coalition’s core judicial reforms within striking distance of being finalized into law.

Protesters against the judicial overhaul are detained after blocking a road near the government complex in Jerusalem, March 14, 2023 (Yonatan Sindel/Flash90)

In addition, legislation was advanced to block the High Court from ordering a prime minister to recuse themselves from activities even in cases of a conflict of interest, as was a bill repealing the sections of the 2005 Disengagement Law that paved the way for the evacuation of four settlements in the northern West Bank

Meanwhile, protesters were gearing up for another major campaign to disrupt daily life on Thursday.

Last week, around 20 protesters glued themselves to the floor at the entrance to a Tel Aviv building housing a number of government offices.

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