World Mizrachi movement urges Israeli parties to hold judicial reform negotiations

Judah Ari Gross is The Times of Israel's religions and Diaspora affairs correspondent.

The religious Zionist World Mizrachi movement calls on Israeli political parties to meet and negotiate judicial reform, saying it is “deeply alarmed and concerned by the divisiveness and vitriolic tone” surrounding the current proposals to dramatically overhaul the judicial system.

World Mizrachi, an Orthodox movement, says it supports the initiative of President Isaac Herzog to bring the different Knesset factions together to discuss the issue, calling his efforts “bold and critical.”

“As the president has mentioned, there is definitely a need for judicial reform in terms of creating a fair and reasonable balance of power between the Government and the Judiciary. At the same time, we echo his great concern for the antagonism and animosity being voiced. Indeed, issues of such significant changes ought to be achieved by broad consensus,” the group says in a statement.

While other religious Zionist groups and individuals have advocated for compromise and negotiations on the proposed judicial overhaul, World Mizrachi is one of the most conservative to join the call.

“Over the last 30 years, far-reaching controversial changes were made by the Government such as the Oslo Accords and disengagement from Gaza. These changes were done with the thinnest of majorities and in a way where around half the citizens of Israel were forced into something they saw as catastrophic. For many, calls for a broader consensus were ignored and terrible consequences are still being felt. Past actions need to be learned from to ensure that positive and sustainable change can take place in a way that the internal fabric of Israel is strengthened and not, G-d forbid, threatened,” it says.

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