Ignoring Protests, Israeli Knesset Advances Judicial Overhaul

Israelis have protested against benjamin Netanyahu's government. (Photo: via WAFA)

The Israeli parliament approved at its first reading on Tuesday morning a bill limiting the Supreme Court’s ability to overturn laws it deems unconstitutional – a key element of a judicial overhaul package that has fuelled weeks of protests, The New Arab reported.

The text was adopted just before 3 am local time (0100 GMT) by a vote of 61 to 52, though it will still need to be approved at second and third readings before becoming law.

The bill makes it more difficult for the Israeli Supreme Court to strike down legislation deemed to contravene the Basic Laws, requiring that a 12-member majority of a 15-judge panel rule in favor.

Israeli Protesters Target Netanyahu at Ben Gurion Airport

It would also allow the Israeli parliament, with just a simple majority, to override Supreme Court decisions striking down legislation and deny the court the right to review such a move.

Before the vote on that bill, lawmakers also approved in its first reading a separate one considerably limiting the chances of a prime minister being impeached.

The government of Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, whose ruling coalition includes extreme-right parties, introduced its judicial overhaul package in January.

Ten consecutive weeks of nationwide demonstrations followed, with critics saying the package is aimed at handing politicians more power at the expense of the judiciary and protecting Netanyahu, who is facing corruption charges.

(The New Arab, PC)

(The Palestine Chronicle is a registered 501(c)3 organization, thus, all donations are tax deductible.)
Our Vision For Liberation: Engaged Palestinian Leaders & Intellectuals Speak Out