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THE WEEK AHEAD: Israel reeling from a deadly week of terror attacks, Jerusalem celebrates three holidays, judicial reform marathon discussions underway and a march to support of Jewish presence in Judea and Samaria

Here are the stories we are watching...

Police at the scene of a car-ramming attack in Tel Aviv, Apr. 7, 2023. (Photo: Avshalom Sassoni/Flash90)
  • Security situation

  • Judicial reform

  • Easter

  • Eviatar march

  • Israeli technology in space

SECURITY SITUATION

Israel is reeling from a week full of violence with two deadly terrorist attacks, rockets fired from Gaza and Lebanon and clashes on Jerusalem’s Temple Mount. Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s security Cabinet is under pressure to retaliate. Israel Defense Forces reservists and Border Police units were ordered to mobilize against the recent wave of terrorism sweeping the country.

“We are all, without exception, united on this,” said Netanyahu. He vowed that Israel “will hit back at our enemies, and they will pay the price for every act of aggression."

JUDICIAL REFORM

Israeli lawmakers from the coalition and the opposition, as well as judicial experts from both sides, are still trying to negotiate an outline around the government’s judicial reform that will be accepted by all. Talks kicked off about two weeks ago at the official residence of Israeli President Isaac Herzog, and have continued throughout the Jewish holiday of Passover. Marathon discussions are also expected to take place this week.

Reports in Israeli media indicate that opposition leaders Yair Lapid and Benny Gantz have seemingly different approaches regarding the best way to address the process of selecting judges to the Supreme Court. Gantz has reportedly showed more flexibility towards the coalition than Lapid. Despite ongoing attempts to reach a broad compromise, protests against and in support of the reforms have not ceased.

Meanwhile, Netanyahu decided to postpone the firing of Defense Minister Yoav Gallant, citing security developments in the area. According to reports, it is possible that Gallant will eventually be reinstated. 

EASTER

Christian communities in Israel and across the Middle East will celebrate Easter on Resurrection Sunday, April 9, as the holiday coincides with Passover and the Muslim month of Ramadan. Ahead of the festive period, the Israel Police announced it has invested efforts to ensure the freedom of worship and safety of all citizens in the Old City of Jerusalem, as many guests representing all faiths are expected tour the region throughout the week. Data from the Franciscan Pilgrims’ Office indicate that at least 261,353 Christian pilgrims are expected to travel to Jerusalem this year.

The same period last year saw clashes between Israeli forces and Palestinians. Church leaders were quoted by The Times of Israel as saying, “over the past year, some of our churches, funeral processions and places of public gathering have become targets of attack,” with some ceremonies “closed off to thousands of worshipers.”

EVIATAR MARCH

The Jewish settlement of Eviatar in the Samaria Regional Council, also known as a portion of the West Bank, has been a flashpoint for clashes between settlers and Palestinians who claim ownership over this piece of land. Thousands of Israelis are expected to take part in a march to Eviatar on Monday this week to show their support to strengthening the Jewish presence in the contested region. Among them will be members of the Israeli government, Knesset members, rabbis and public officials.

ISRAELI TECHNOLOGY IN SPACE

The European Space Agency is scheduled to launch the JUICE mission to planet Jupiter on Thursday, April 14 – it’s biggest and most prestigious mission to date. The aircraft will embark on a 900-million-kilometer journey to Jupiter, where it will orbit its moons over a period of four years. Ahead of the launch, the Israeli Space Agency announced it joined up with the Italian Space Agency to conduct "groundbreaking scientific experiments" on the JUICE spacecraft, led by the Weizmann Institute of Science. The experiments are designed, among other phenomena, to investigate whether subterranean oceans exist on Jupiter's moons and if they possess the conditions necessary to sustain life.

This week we are also keeping an eye on these developing stories:

  • ... Could Netanyahu trial become a closed-door mediation?

  • ... Why are Israeli military reservists refusing to serve?

  • ... ALL ISRAEL NEWS names fabulous new book by Shannon Bream our top pick for April

The All Israel News Staff is a team of journalists in Israel.

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