September 22, 2017

Massive protests in Israel over cost of living

People soup - an old Jewish recipe.

Unprecedented protests in Israel have seen hundreds of thousands take to the streets to demand government action over the rising cost of living.

The largest protest was in Tel Aviv where police said at least 200,000 people were on the streets, while another 30,000 marched in Jerusalem.

Some protesters have also set up camp in city centres.

Police spokesman Micky Rosenfeld that as well as Tel Aviv and Jerusalem, an estimated 20,000 people had taken part in protests in other towns and cities.

“Our numbers are more than 250,000 people across the country,” he told AFP news agency.

Israeli media put the number of protesters closer to 300,000. This is predictable. There is always about a 20 percent premium loading on protester number estimates by media.

The unaffordability of housing, childcare and even some basic foods has driven many Israelis to despair in a country with high prices but relatively low salaries.

The Israeli government is going to have to take some decisive action to placate the protesters. When the middle-classes take to the streets a democratically elected government is in serious shit.

Prime Minister Netanyahu has promised to reassess his government’s priorities and make housing more affordable. This is hardly going to get the people off the streets and back in front of the TV.

Newswarped thinks maybe the Israeli government could spend more time on peace efforts so they can save millions on military weaponry.