Some 5,000 people marched down Ibn Gvirol Street on Saturday night, in what
appeared to be the largest such protest in Tel Aviv since last
The demonstrators had the same spirit and chants as last year –
if not the numbers – with calls of “The people want social justice” and “Take to
the streets, the country is crumbling” echoing through central Tel
Dozens of protesters also brought pots and pans in solidarity with
the ongoing student protests in Montreal, providing the march with a
When met with the Passover-style “How is this
night different from other nights” question, Stav Shafir, one of the leaders of
last year’s protests, said, “This is the beginning of the summer.
back here again en masse in the street, no matter how much they’ve tried to take
away our hope,” she said.
Other protests were held in Jerusalem and
Haifa, also under the banner: “All of the country out in the streets – bringing
back hope and justice.”
Shafir addressed the recent unity government
agreement signed between Kadima and the ruling Likud Party, saying that public
distaste for the deal helped bring more people out to the streets.
protest was marked by the absence of Daphni Leef, the young Tel Avivian woman
who set up a tent on Rothschild Boulevard last July 14 to protest high rents,
launching the J14 movement.
On her Facebook page earlier on Saturday,
Leef said she could not attend because of a personal engagement.
time, Shafir has eclipsed her as the most prominent face of the
A contingent of MKs and activists from the Meretz Party joined
the march in Tel Aviv on Saturday night.