Israelis protest against Covid-19 lockdown restrictions

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Israelis protest against Covid-19 lockdown restrictions

Thousands of Israelis took to the streets across the country to protest against new Covid-19 lockdown restrictions that would ban mass demonstrations, the media reported.

According to the new measures passed last week, residents of the country are barred from travelling more than a kilometer from their homes to protest, while also limiting demonstrations to socially distanced groups of 20, reports The Times of Israel.

On Saturday, socially distanced rallies were held across Israel, some of which turned violent following clashes between the police and protesters.

At least 38 people were arrested in Tel Aviv, the police said in a statement, for “violating public order and attacking police officers”.

By Sunday morning, 37 of the arrested people were freed, except one was suspected of assaulting an officer, it said.

In Jerusalem, four people were arrested or allegedly violating the lockdown order.

“Many protesters disturbed order, blocked roads, ignored the instructions of officers and resorted to physical and verbal violence.

“A large majority overtly broke the emergency regulations when they gathered with no distancing, not wearing masks and endangering public health,” the statement added.

Meanwhile, the “Black Flags” movement, one of the groups that had organised Saturday’s mass protests, said that over 100,000 people participated throughout the country.

But the claim has not been officially verified.

Also several incidents of violence against the protesters were reported from all across the country, said The Times of Israel report.

While an 81-year-old woman was said to have been shoved to the ground in Jerusalem, In northern Tel Aviv, protesters said a woman was assaulted and injured.

Channel 13 reported that in Pardes Hannah, a protester’s arm was broken by an attacker, while in Holon and Ramat Gan, glass bottles were hurled at demonstrators.

Defence Minister Benny Gantz said that attacks on protesters were “unacceptable” and called on police to bring the culprits to justice. 

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