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Biden and Netanyahu argue over Israel judicial reform

Over the protests against Israel’s judicial reform, Biden and Netanyahu argue. 

Israel has defied “pressure from abroad,” says Netanyahu in response to Biden’s advice to “back away” from judicial changes. 

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said he does not make choices based on pressure from overseas after US President Joe Biden said Israel “cannot continue” with highly contentious judicial reforms that are now on hold and caused months of upheaval. 

On Tuesday, Biden made his remarks as Netanyahu was under fire from rivals for allegedly trampling on Israeli democracy in an effort to increase his own influence, sparking nationwide strikes and protests that paralyzed the country. “Like many ardent supporters of Israel, I’m really worried. During a trip to North Carolina, Biden told reporters, “They cannot go down this route, and I’ve sort of made that apparent. 

“Maybe the prime minister [Netanyahu] would act in a way that he will attempt to work out some genuine compromise, but that remains to be seen,” Biden said, adding that he was unlikely to extend an invitation to the Israeli president to the White House “in the near term.” 

Later, at a speech in Washington, DC, Biden urged Netanyahu’s government to abandon the divisive judiciary law. 

He told the press, “I hope they walk away from it. According to Reuters, Netanyahu swiftly responded to Biden with a statement. 

Israel is a sovereign nation that bases its decisions on the desire of its citizens rather than outside pressure, even from its closest allies, he said. 

According to Netanyahu, his administration aims to implement reforms “through wide consensus”. 

As someone who has known President Biden for almost 40 years, Netanyahu praised his dedication to Israel over the years. He claimed that the US-Israeli alliance is unbreakable and consistently outweighs their infrequent conflicts. 

Israel’s President Isaac Herzog said on Monday that the government’s proposed changes to the judiciary be put on hold “for the sake of the unity of the people of Israel, for the sake of responsibility.” 

The appeal on Monday from the head of state, who often stays out of politics, highlights the concern that the proposals have sparked and comes after a tumultuous night of demonstrations on Sunday in Israel in response to the ousting of the nation’s defense minister. 

In an unplanned eruption of rage, tens of thousands of demonstrators rushed to the streets in Israel’s major cities after Netanyahu dismissed his defense minister for opposing his plan to revamp the judiciary. 

Yoav Gallant, the recently ousted defense minister, was the first prominent Likud party figure to publicly oppose the reforms, claiming that the party’s intense differences risked weakening Israel’s military.

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