Activists erect 'Justice Tower' for affordable homes

Social justice protesters vow not to leave building near Kibbutz Yakum in Sharon region until solution to cost of housing.

July 17, 2012 07:20
1 minute read.
Protesters block streets in Jerusalem

Protesters block streets in Jerusalem 370. (photo credit: Marc Israel Sellem)

Social justice activists erected a building near Kibbutz Yakum in the Sharon region overnight Monday in a protest for affordable housing.

Under the banner "Justice Tower" and with Israeli flags flying above the makeshift structure, the group of around 20 activists vowed they would not leave the area until the government offered a solution to what they say are increasing housing prices. The activists claimed the land is publicly owned, managed by the Jewish National Fund.

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The social justice movement, though smaller than that which brought hundreds of thousands to the streets last summer, has become increasingly active.

Vandals attempted to set fire to the National Insurance Institute in Ramat Gan on Sunday night, following demonstrations of solidarity with Moshe Silman, who set himself on fire in the name of social justice a day earlier. A few thousand activists also blocked a portion of the Ayalon Highway, and scuffles ensued with police over violence.

Authorities have been active in removing structures erected in the name of social justice, eager to avoid a situation similar to the one last summer when thousands of tents were strewn along Tel Aviv's Rothschild Boulevard, and indeed across the country. In Jerusalem on Monday morning, inspectors and police evicted a tent encampment in the Independence Park, just a day-and-a-half after activists from last year’s tent protests attempted to recreate “Camp No Choice.”

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