TEL AVIV (Dispatches) -- Tens of thousands have joined protests across Occupied Palestine, now entering their 20th week, against prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s contested plans to give himself powers without accountability.
The planned overhaul, which would give the regime control over naming judges to the supreme court and let parliament override many rulings, was paused after opponents organized some of the biggest street protests ever seen in the occupied territories.
Critics say it will remove vital checks and balances and hand unchecked power to the regime.
A sea of protesters crammed a central highway in Tel Aviv. Protestors chanted, “Israel is almost a dictatorship,” as a banner reading “stop them” was held up by the crowd.
“It scares me that we are still a few hours away at any given moment from turning to a dictatorship,” Sagi Mizrahi, a 40-year-old computer programmer told Reuters in Tel Aviv. “I’m here because of the judicial system and the laws that are still sitting on the table, it’s just scary.”
Protests seemed to have been invigorated with Hebrew media estimating some 90,000-100,000 in attendance.
“Gradually, myself my kids and my grandkids are losing the hope to live here and to have a normal life like every person deserves,” Hava Golan, 65 year-old biology professor said.
Netanyahu’s cabinet is filled with “convicted terrorists”, according to former Israeli prime minister Ehud Olmert.
On Sunday morning, Itamar Ben Gvir, the occupying regime’s far-right security minister, declared “we’re in charge here” as he and a group of Jewish extremists entered Al-Aqsa Mosque.
The visit to the site will be seen as a provocative move by Palestinians and comes just days after thousands of Jewish extremists marched through occupied East Al-Quds on the annual “flag march” demonstration.
“We’re in charge here,” Ben Gvir said in a statement after visiting the holy site.
According to Haaretz, Ben Gvir did not coordinate the visit with the Jordanian Waqf, the body that nominally oversees the site.
Al-Aqsa Mosque is an Islamic site where unsolicited visits, prayers and rituals by non-Muslims are forbidden, according to decades-long international agreements.
Zionist groups, in coordination with authorities, have long violated the delicate arrangement and facilitated raids of the site and performed prayers and religious rituals.
Hamas, the Palestinian movement that administers the Gaza Strip, strongly criticized Sunday’s visit by the Israeli extremist leader.
The group wrote on Telegram that the occupying regime of Israel would “bear responsibility for the barbaric incursions of its