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Israel: Gov’t, opposition hold talks on judicial overhaul

April 11, 2023 at 8:24 am

Israel’s President Isaac Herzog in Berlin, Germany on September 06, 2022 [Abdulhamid Hoşbaş/Anadolu Agency]

Israeli President Isaac Herzog yesterday hosted talks between the coalition government and the opposition over the planned judicial overhaul, Anadolu reported.

“The discussion dealt with building the framework for the continuation of the negotiations after Passover, when the parties will meet to discuss the essential issues […] with the aim of trying to reach agreements,” Herzog’s office said in a statement.

The opposition was represented by former Prime Minister Yair Lapid, the head of Yesh Atid Party, and former Defence Minister Benny Gantz, the head of the National Unity alliance.

“The discussions lasted several hours and were conducted in a matter-of-face, in-depth and serious manner with a positive atmosphere,” the statement said.

Protests against the planned judicial reform continued for the 14th consecutive week on Saturday with thousands of Israelis taking to the streets.

The Israeli opposition views the judicial overhaul plans as an attempt to reduce the powers of the judicial authority in favour of the executive.

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu insists that his judicial plans would enhance democracy and restore the balance between the legislative, executive and judicial powers.

On 27 March, Netanyahu responded to pressure and announced a temporary halt to the judicial overhaul plans.

But several far-right MKs and ministers said that the judicial overhaul will be approved by the Knesset sooner or later.

READ: Israel Ben-Gvir threatens to resign if judicial overhaul halted