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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.

What happens now that emergency orders are lifting

Expand chart
Data: National Academy for State Health Policy and various governor declarations; Chart: Sara Wise/Axios

Soon, more than half the states will have ended their formal emergency declarations for the pandemic — which could have ripple effects across the economy.

Why it matters: Lifting those orders will allow businesses to serve more customers, but will also end certain safety nets, including expanded food and housing assistance, as well as eviction protections.

Updated 3 hours ago - World

500 Hong Kong police officers raid pro-democracy newspaper

Chief Operations Officer Chow Tat Kuen (front 2nd R) is escorted by police from the Apple Daily newspaper offices before being put into a waiting vehicle in Hong Kong on Thursday. Photo: Anthony Wallace/AFP via Getty Images

Hong Kong's Apple Daily said 500 police officers searched the pro-democracy newspaper's offices and arrested five senior executives on Thursday.

Why it matters: The arrests of the paper's chief editor, Ryan Law, along with its chief operating officer, two other editors and the CEO of Next Digital, which operates Apple Daily, were made under China's national security law — which gives the government broad power to limit people's political freedom.