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Photo: Jack Guez/AFP via Getty Images

More than 2,000 Israelis stood 6 feet apart in Tel Aviv's Rabin Square on Sunday to protest what they consider the erosion of democracy under the coronavirus-era government of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, Haaretz reports.

The big picture: The "Black Flag" demonstrations, which began in March, are a response to stringent coronavirus policies that include phone tracking for civilians. Police marked spots on the ground where protesters could stand, and organizers were required to provide participants with masks, Haaretz notes.

What they're saying: As Netanyahu and his former rival Benny Gantz work to form a unity government, Yesh Atid chairman Yair Lapid — who was part of the same Blue and White party as Gantz up until last month — accused them of destroying Israeli democracy, according to the Times of Israel.

  • “They are fighting to get into the government,” Lapid said in a speech to protestors. “Telling themselves stories. They say, 'We’ll fight from the inside.' You won’t fight from the inside. You don’t fight corruption from within. If you’re inside, you’re part of it."
  • “A person with indictments can’t appoint a police chief, a state prosecutor, an attorney general, the judges who will deal with his case. That is Netanyahu’s list of demands. ... That’s how democracies die in the 21st century. They’re not wiped out by tanks overrunning parliament. They die from within."
A tweet previously embedded here has been deleted or was tweeted from an account that has been suspended or deleted.
In photos
A protester wearing a face mask with " crime minister" written on it. Photo: Jack Guez/AFP via Getty Images
Protestors standing at a distance. Photo: Jack Guez/AFP via Getty Images
The measures are being attacked as anti-democratic by opponents. Photo: Jack Guez/AFP via Getty Images
Photo: Amir Levy/Getty Images
A tweet previously embedded here has been deleted or was tweeted from an account that has been suspended or deleted.

Go deeper

Updated Jul 27, 2020 - Politics & Policy

In photos: Civil rights icon John Lewis honored with ceremonies across Alabama

A horse-drawn carriage carrying the body of the late Rep. John Lewis on July 26 crosses the Edmund Pettus Bridge in Selma, Alabama, where Lewis and other civil rights leaders were attacked by police officers while marching in support of voting rights. Photo: Lynsey Weatherspoon/Getty Images

The life of the late Rep. John Lewis (D-Ga.) is being celebrated in a series of memorials this weekend across Alabama, the state in which he was born.

The big picture: Six days of remembrance for the giant of the civil rights movement, who died on July 17 at age 80, began Saturday morning with a service celebrating "The Boy from Troy" at Trojan Arena, Troy University, per a schedule provided by his family.

Ro Khanna wary of Biden approach on Middle East

Rep. Ro Khanna. Photo: Cody Glenn/Sportsfile for Web Summit via Getty Images

An outspoken progressive Democrat is wary of President Biden’s approach to the Middle East, arguing it’s like “conceding defeat of the aspiration” to win a Nobel Peace Prize.

Why it matters: A number of members of Biden’s own party dislike his Middle East strategy, as his administration signals the region is no longer the priority it was for President Obama and his predecessors.

Democrats eye reconciliation for immigration

Photo: Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images

Comprehensive immigration reform is a pipe dream, but some Senate Democrats are hoping to tie key immigration provisions to the next big reconciliation push.

Why it matters: Immigration is one of the most controversial and partisan issues in U.S. politics, which is why the budget reconciliation process — which allows for bills to pass the Senate with a simple majority rather than the usual 60 votes — is so attractive.