Home/ News / World/  Israel doesn't yield to 'foreign pressure'; Netanyahu pushes back against Biden's call to drop controversial law

US President Joe Biden earlier urged Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to abandon a controversial judicial overhaul proposal that has sparked large-scale protests in Israel. Netanyahu delayed the proposal on March 27 after a large number of people took to the streets, prompting the White House to suggest that Netanyahu should seek a compromise on the issue.

However, during a press conference on March 28, Biden went further by saying, "I hope he walks away from it," referring to the judicial proposal that would give the Israeli government greater control over appointments to the country's Supreme Court.

In response, Netanyahu quickly issued a statement stating that Israel is a sovereign country that makes its decisions by the will of its people and not based on pressure from abroad, including from its closest allies. He went on to say that his administration was committed to strengthening democracy by restoring the proper balance between the three branches of government and achieving reforms via broad consensus.

Also Read: Netanyahu govt faces strong opposition over legal changes: Key points

"Israel is a sovereign country which makes its decisions by the will of its people and not based on pressures from abroad, including from the best of friends," he said.

Biden's concerns stem from the fact that the proposed judicial reforms have prompted months of unrest and criticism from Western allies. During a visit to North Carolina, Biden warned Israel that it "cannot continue down this road." He added that he hoped Netanyahu would work out a genuine compromise but noted that he was not considering inviting the Israeli leader to the White House in the near term.

Upon his return to Washington, Biden reiterated his concerns about the situation in Israel, where Netanyahu has been accused of riding roughshod over Israeli democracy to strengthen his own power. He called for the controversial judiciary law to be dropped, telling reporters, "I hope they walk away from it."

Also Read: UNSC to ask Israel to ‘immediately’ stop all settlement activities in Palestine, calls it ‘flagrant violation'

Although the US and Israel have a longstanding alliance, Biden's comments underscore the tensions that exist between the two countries regarding Netanyahu's policies. Biden's stance on the judicial overhaul proposal could strain US-Israeli relations further if Netanyahu continues to pursue the reforms despite US opposition.

(With agency inputs)

Sounak Mukhopadhyay
Sounak Mukhopadhyay, who also goes by the name Sounak Mukherjee, has been producing digital news since 2012. He's worked for the International Business Times, The Inquisitr, and Moneycontrol in the past. He's also contributed to Free Press Journal and TheRichest with feature articles. He covers news for a wide range of subjects including business, finance, economy, politics and social media. Before working with digital news publications, he worked as a freelance content writer.
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Updated: 29 Mar 2023, 11:02 AM IST
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