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Israel’s Black Flag protest gathers momentum

Around 2,000 people gathered at Rabin Square in Tel Aviv on April 26 in a Black Flag demonstration against the unity deal between Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Blue and White leader Benny Gantz, and in defense of the country’s democracy.

About 2,000 protesters gathered April 25 at Tel Aviv's Rabin Square for one more Black Flag demonstration against the coalition deal signed between Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Blue and White leader Benny Gantz. Keeping the 6-foot social distance required as a result of the coronavirus threat, protesters dressed in black carried Israeli blue and white flags stained by black "tears." Former Shin Bet head Carmi Gillon, one of the keynote speakers at the rally, blamed the Netanyahu-Gantz deal for destroying Israel’s parliament and warned Netanyahu to stop the incitement campaign against the country’s top judges. Several hundred people also demonstrated in the town of Kiryat Tivon southeast of Haifa.

The demonstrators said the national-unity deal erodes Israel’s democracy, violates its Basic Laws and makes a mockery out of the country’s legal system and high court. Some demonstrators carried signs warning of the Knesset’s demise, while other warned that the deal would encourage incitement against Israel’s justices to the point of putting the lives of judges at risk and generating another political assassination (after that of Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin in 1995).

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