‘The plundering government’: Thousands protest in Haifa

Anti-overhaul protesters gather in Haifa, May 20, 2023. (Dror Gilboa/Courtesy)
Anti-overhaul protesters gather in Haifa, May 20, 2023. (Dror Gilboa/Courtesy)

Thousands are protesting in the northern coastal city of Haifa this evening against the government’s judicial overhaul plans.

Organizers say the demonstrations across the country tonight are focusing on the “plunder of public coffers” in the state budget, set to be approved by the end of the month.

In Haifa, protesters unfurl a large banner that reads: “The plundering government.”

Protest groups say this “refers to the government’s attempt to give 14 billion shekels of taxpayer money to the ultra-Orthodox and ultra-nationalist settler parties.”

The government’s plans to allocate large sums of money to the ultra-Orthodox community have also drawn criticism from within the Finance Ministry for being unsustainable in the long term.

According to Channel 12 news, the main protest in Tel Aviv appears to be smaller compared to previous weeks, which has seen around 200,000 gather on Kaplan Street.

The network says protesters are urging opposition chief MK Yair Lapid and MK Benny Gantz to leave ongoing talks for a compromise on the overhaul plans at the President’s Residence. There has been little reported progress during the talks over the past two months.

Anti-overhaul protesters gather in Tel Aviv, May 20, 2023. (Gilad Furst/Courtesy)

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