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Thousands rally in Tel Aviv to protest against soaring cost of living

An Israeli protester holds up a poster reading 'And what of our future???' in Hebrew as people participate in a mass rally in Tel Aviv on February 16, 2022 to protest against the rising cost of living there. (Photo via Twitter)

Thousands of Israelis have held a mass demonstration in Tel Aviv to voice their resentment against the soaring cost of living in the city, which is estimated to have become the most expensive metropolis in the world to live in.

The protest, organized by Israeli actor Guy Lerer, was staged at Habima Square on Wednesday evening.

The organizers said the protest was not affiliated with any political camp and only demanded that authorities deal with the rising prices.

“The public is starting to cry out and take to the streets and this is only the start,” Lerer told Israel’s Channel 13 television network from the protest site.

During the protest, a stall was set up offering packages of basic foods at a relatively low price, part of a widespread initiative set up by Lerer.

The campaign allowed the public to buy the boxes for themselves, or donate to those in need.

“It is important that the message reaches the decision-makers that the public expects solutions and the prioritizing of citizens against the large monopolies,” Linor Deutsch, head of Lobby 99 organization, told the crowd.

There has been intense public anger in recent weeks over rising costs, after the price of both gasoline and electricity, as well as basic goods, went up.

According to the Economist Intelligence Unit's (EIU) Worldwide Cost of Living index, Tel Aviv is ranked the most expensive city in the world.

Tel Aviv rose to the top spot from fifth place last year, beating out Paris and Singapore, which were tied for second place.

Its move up the ladder is partly due to the increases in transport and grocery prices. 

Property prices in Tel Aviv have also risen, particularly in residential areas, although they are not considered part of the index, added the EIU.

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