Social justice protesters flock to Tel Aviv for rally

JERUSALEM (JTA) — More than 3,000 Israelis marked the two-year anniversary of the social justice protest movement and protested current government economic policy during a rally in Tel Aviv.

The Saturday night protest blocked the major Ayalon Highway and marched in downtown Tel Aviv as well as south Tel Aviv.

The demonstrators protested against the high cost of living, government budget cuts, and the failure to initiate social reform.

The protest also commemorated the one-year anniversary of the death of social activist Moshe Sliman, who set himself on fire at a demonstration in Tel Aviv last summer. A letter written by Sliman shortly before he committed suicide was read at the main demonstration and protestors observed a moment of silence in his memory.

The rally was organized by many of the leaders of the successful 2011 social justice protests, including Daphni Leef.

Protesters decried Finance Minister Yair Lapid, head of the Yesh Atid Party, which was born out of the social justice protests, as well as Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.