Thousands gathered across Israel to protest against Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Saturday, October 3, despite recent restrictions put in place to curb demonstrations during the current coronavirus disease (COVID-19) lockdown. A new law introduced on Wednesday, September 30, bans people from holding demonstrations more than 1 km (0.5 mi) from their homes and enforces social distancing. Scattered protests were witnessed throughout the country, with a larger demonstration drawing thousands of participants in Tel Aviv. Fifteen people were arrested during the protests as minor altercations with security forces were reported.
Anti-government demonstrations are likely to continue across the country in the near term. A heightened security presence and localized disruptions to transport are expected in the vicinity of any protests.
Protests have been reported throughout Israel in recent months over the government's handling of the COVID-19 pandemic. Anger over the issue has been compounded by pre-existing anti-Netanyahu sentiment, with the Prime Minister facing three criminal cases over alleged corruption.
Those in Israel are advised to monitor developments, avoid protests as a precaution, and adhere to all instructions issued by the local authorities.
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