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Israel: Violent Protests Across Tel Aviv #J14

Thousands rushed to the streets of Tel Aviv Saturday evening, June 23rd, after violent clashes erupted between protesters and cops the previous day. On Friday, June 22nd, social justice (#J14) protesters attempted to re-occupy Tel Aviv's Rothshield boulevard with tents and were met with heavy violence from police. The police chief Yoram Ochion stated the protest was not approved due to legal “issues”.

The #J14 official website called on its supporters to assemble at Habima square Saturday evening:

On Friday, June 22nd, children, women, elderly and worried citizen were violently beaten because they executed the most basic right – the right to protest. Bleeding legs and many arrested protesters was the outcome of our attempts to place a tent in the boulevard. The disproportionate use of power and the oppression that we, the citizens of Israel, received today is a violent attempt of the Israeli regime to crush us. They took our apartments, our jobs, our right to live in dignity, our future, hope – and now they're trying to take away our freedom. Get up from your sofa, from the television, A/C's and shopping malls. Come out from your cars, break the walls, and rise with us – proud and determined for the struggle for our future.

In response, thousands hit the streets of Tel Aviv. More than 80 protesters were arrested after heavy violence erupted between protesters and cops. Bank windows were shattered and hundreds blocked two major roads and the Ayalon highway. Slogans such as “the people demand social justice”, “all the people are the opposition” and “the people demand democracy” were chanted throughout the evening.

Here are some tweets and images from Tel Aviv. Orly Barlev writes [heb]:

Many arrested. Earlier, eggs were thrown at the municipality building. Ayalon (hwy), Even Gvirol and Begin roads blocked at the same time. Three banks were violated. Thousands in front of the municipality building right now. #j14

Nitay Peretz comments:

In a country where the elites, banks, government, police and settlers crush the law every day, why are you all of a sudden making such a big deal that a law was broken?

The photograph below shows protesters taking over Ayalon Highway:

The following tweet was posted two days ago but heavily retweeted during the height of the violence:

Place a tent in Rothshield blvd and you'll be violently arrested. Place a caravan on someone's private land in the occupied territories and you'll be funded a house.

And in closing, someone posted an image of a tagged police car. The word written on the back of the police car reads “Mishta-ra'al”. “Mishtara” means police, “Mishtar” means regime, and “ra'al’ means poison. Effective word play references both the government and police as toxic.

Here are some useful feeds for those of you who want to follow the Israeli social justice movement:
- Elian's excellent livestream
- #J14 on Twitter
- J14 on public Facebook status updates
- The official J14 website

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