Thousands of demonstrators on Saturday gathered outside the official residence of Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and thronged the streets of central Jerusalem, as weeks of protests against the Israeli leader appeared to be gaining steam.
The demonstration in Jerusalem, along with smaller gatherings in Tel Aviv, near Netanyahu’s beach house in central Israel and at dozens of busy intersections nationwide, was one of the largest turnouts in weeks of protests.
Throughout the summer, thousands of Israelis have taken to the streets, calling for Netanyahu to resign, protesting his handling of the country’s COVID-19 outbreak and saying he should not remain in office while on trial for corruption charges.
Although Netanyahu has tried to play down the protests, the twice-a-week gatherings show no signs of slowing.
Israeli media estimated at least 10,000 people demonstrated near the official residence in Jerusalem.
Late on Saturday, thousands marched through the streets in a noisy, but orderly rally. Demonstrators hoisted Israeli flags and blew loud horns as they marched.
Many held posters that said “Crime Minister” and “Bibi Go Home” or accused Netanyahu of being out of touch with the public.
Hundreds of people remained in the area well after midnight, ignoring calls by police to leave. Anti-riot forces moved into the area and began clearing out people.
As of 2am, most of the remaining people appeared to be leaving peacefully, but police were seen dragging some protesters away.
The rallies against Netanyahu are the largest Israel has seen since 2011 protests over the country’s high cost of living.
Netanyahu has dismissed the demonstrators as “leftists” and “anarchists.”
Late on Saturday, his Likud Party issued a statement that accused Israel’s two private TV stations of giving “free and endless publicity” to the protesters, and exaggerating the importance of the gatherings.
While the demonstrations have largely been peaceful, there have been signs of violence in the past few days. Some protesters have clashed with police, accusing them of using excessive force, while small gangs of Netanyahu supporters affiliated with a far-right group have assaulted demonstrators.
Netanyahu has said demonstrators were inciting violence against him.
Israeli police have arrested about 20 far-right advocates in the past few days and police said they were on high alert for violence at the demonstrations.
Several arrests of Netanyahu supporters were reported Saturday, including a man who got out of his vehicle in the northern city of Haifa and threw a stone toward a crowd of protesters.
Police said that a 63-year-old woman was slightly hurt.
The demonstrations are organized by a loose-knit network of advocate groups. Some object to Netanyahu remaining in office while he is on trial. He has been charged with fraud, breach of trust and accepting bribes in a series of scandals.
An Australian university student who has never visited China and has only a modest social media following would seem an unlikely target for the Chinese government. However, when a Chinese Ministry of Foreign Affairs spokesman personally denounced Drew Pavlou at a news conference, it was just the next phase in an extraordinary campaign against the 21-year-old that has fueled concerns over China’s targeting of critics overseas. Pavlou first placed himself in the superpower’s sights when in July last year he organized a small sit-in at the University of Queensland, where he studies, to protest against various Chinese government policies. Since then, the Global
‘ASKED TO MOVE OUT’: Indonesian coast guard personnel argued with a Chinese vessel over territorial claims after it entered the country’s exclusive economic zone An Indonesian patrol ship confronted a Chinese coast guard vessel that spent almost three days in waters where Indonesia claims economic rights and that are near the southernmost part of China’s disputed claims to the South China Sea. The Indonesian Maritime Security Agency on Friday night detected Chinese ship 5204 entering Indonesia’s exclusive economic zone (EEZ) in what Indonesia calls the North Natuna Sea. The agency sent a patrol ship that closed within 1km of the Chinese coast guard vessel and they communicated to affirm their position and their nation’s claims to the area, Indonesian Maritime Security Agency head Aan Kurnia said. “We
BEFORE WINTER COMES: Snow cuts off roads into Ladakh for four months or more each year, so the crunch is on to get food, tents and high-altitude equipment to Leh From deploying mules to large transport aircraft, the Indian military has activated its entire logistics network to transport supplies to thousands of troops for a harsh winter along a bitterly disputed Himalayan border with China. In the past few months, one of India’s biggest military logistics exercises in years has brought vast quantities of ammunition, equipment, fuel, winter supplies and food into Ladakh, a region bordering Tibet that India administers as a union territory, officials said. The move was triggered by a border standoff with China in the snow deserts of Ladakh that began in May and escalated in June into hand-to-hand
Dark matter, mysterious invisible stuff that makes up most of the mass of galaxies, including the Milky Way, is confounding scientists again, with new observations of distant galaxies conflicting with the current understanding of its nature. Research published this week revealed an unexpected discrepancy between observations of dark matter concentrations in three massive clusters of galaxies encompassing trillions of stars and theoretical computer simulations of how dark matter should be distributed. “Either there is a missing ingredient in the simulations or we have made a fundamental incorrect assumption about the nature of dark matter,” Yale University astrophysicist Priyamvada Natarajan, a coauthor of