Sunday, August 7, 2011

Israel jolted by rare mass demos

Hundreds of thousands of Israelis have held a demonstration in Tel Aviv to protest against the high cost of living, August 6, 2011.

Source: Press TV

Hundreds of thousands of people have staged anti-regime demonstrations across Israel as street protests continue for a third consecutive week.

More than 300,000 people attended demonstrations in Israeli cities and towns, from Kiryat Shmona in the north to the Negev in the south, on Saturday night to protest against the high cost of living, especially skyrocketing housing prices, and to demand social justice, the daily Ha'aretz reported on its website.

The protesters were chanting, “The people demand social justice” while carrying banners reading “Resign, Egypt is here.”

The largest demonstration was held in Tel Aviv, where more than 200,000 marched across the city.

The police closed the main avenue early on Saturday in anticipation of the demonstration and will only reopen it on Sunday afternoon.

Several other major roads in the central part of the city were blocked during the demonstration.

In al-Quds (Jerusalem), more than 20,000 demonstrators marched toward the residence of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.

The demonstrations are gaining momentum as Netanyahu is facing mounting pressure over his handling of the economy.

Some protesters have also criticized Israel's settlement expansion policy. They blame the housing crisis on Tel Aviv's outsized financial support for settlement construction on occupied Palestinian land.

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