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Herzog resumes judicial reform compromise talks

Coalition, Yesh Atid and National Unity party reps meet at the President's Residence in Jerusalem.

Israeli President Isaac Herzog attends an Honorary Citizenship Ceremony in Tel Aviv, March 13, 2023. Photo by Avshalom Sassoni/Flash90.
Israeli President Isaac Herzog attends an Honorary Citizenship Ceremony in Tel Aviv, March 13, 2023. Photo by Avshalom Sassoni/Flash90.

Israeli President Isaac Herzog resumed talks on Monday with Knesset factions aimed at hammering out a compromise on judicial reform.

The president again hosted working teams representing the ruling coalition and the leading opposition parties Yesh Atid and National Unity, respectively the second- and third-largest parties in Israel’s parliament after Likud.

Talks are being held at the President’s Residence in Jerusalem.

Herzog convened the first meeting on March 28, shortly after Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s announcement of a freeze on reform legislation, with coalition, Yesh Atid and National Unity reps also present at the opening discussion, which lasted 90 minutes and was closed to the press as are all of the meetings.

Israeli President Isaac Herzog (center) mediates talks on judicial reform at the President’s Residence in Jerusalem, March 28, 2023. Photo by Kobi Gideon/GPO.

“Stopping the legislation is the right thing. This is the time to begin a sincere, serious and responsible dialogue that will urgently calm the waters and lower the flames,” the president said after Netanyahu’s address to the nation.

“I call on everyone to act responsibly. Protests and demonstrations, on whichever side—yes. Violence—absolutely not! If one side wins, the country will lose. We must remain one people and one country—Jewish and democratic,” Herzog continued.

Herzog hosted a second round of talks on March 29, which featured the participation of representatives of noncoalition factions. He met in the morning with members of the Knesset’s Arab parties—the United Arab List (Ra’am) and Hadash-Ta’al—and in the afternoon with representatives of the Labor Party.

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