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3,000 protest Attorney General's handling of Netanyahu investigation

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu (L) speaks with attorney general Avichai Mandelblit, who is currently investigating a Netanyahu confidant, at a cabinet meeting in Jerusalem on November 8, 2015
Abir Sultan (Pool/AFP/File)
Last week’s protest set a short-lived benchmark of 2,000 demonstrators.

Approximately 3,000 people took part in a demonstration on Saturday night at the home of Attorney General Avichai Mandelblit, located near the outskirts of Tel Aviv in Petah Tikva, protesting his handling of investigations regarding alleged corruption by Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.

The number of participants in Saturday night’s demonstration is reported to be the highest among many other protests that have taken place against Netanyahu over the past half a year or so. Last week’s protest set a short-lived benchmark of 2,000 demonstrators.

This week’s protest took place despite an appeal from locals to the High Court of Justice calling for its cancellation. In their request, the residents specifically complained of the neighborhood turning into a “fortified destination” every week as well as continuous littering following the protests.  

A counter-protest led by Coalition Chairman and Likud Member of Knesset David Bitan, also took place with approximately one hundred activists from Netanyahu’s Likud party, taking part.  Bitan argued that the constant protests at Mandelblit’s residence were “putting unconstitutional and undemocratic pressure on the attorney general,” which was “illegal and undemocratic.”

Bitan also said that the far smaller number of participants in Saturday night’s counter-protest was a result of Sabbath observance by many activists in the Likud party. The Jewish Sabbath ends at dusk on Saturday night, making the timing inconvenient for many Sabbath observers, particularly for those living a significant distance.

Earlier this week, several thousand supporters of Netanyahu took part in a demonstration backing the prime minister in the face of continued investigations of alleged corruption on his part.

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