Protests Swell in Jerusalem
Tens of thousands of Israelis protesting a plan to limit judicial power ended a 45-mile march from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem Saturday by blocking highways and chanting outside parliament. The protests, entering their 29th week, come as the country's ruling conservative coalition looks to vote today on a trimmed-down overhaul of the nation's Supreme Court.
Original plans to give the Knesset—Israel's legislature—the power to overrule the Supreme Court and select a majority of its judges were dropped in light of nationwide strikes and demonstrations (see background). The coalition's simplified plan proposes to abolish the court's use of the "reasonableness" tool to overturn government decisions (see explainer), a concept considered vague by critics but which supporters claim is key to checking government overreach. Thousands of military reservists suspended their service Friday in protest of today's vote.
Meanwhile, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu was taken to the hospital early Sunday to have a pacemaker inserted for a reported heart defect.