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Israeli regime president warns of 'collapse' as protests gather momentum

A file photo of Israel’s president Isaac Herzog. (By AFP)

Israeli regime president Isaac Herzog has warned of "collapse" and "implosion" as angry protests against prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu-led far-right cabinet's controversial "judicial reform plan" gather momentum in the occupied territories.

“For a while, we have no longer been in a political debate, but are on the brink of constitutional and social collapse,” Herzog, whose role is primarily ceremonial, was quoted as saying in a televised speech on Sunday.

“I feel, we all feel, that we are in the moment before a clash, even a violent clash. The gunpowder barrel is about to explode.”

He also called for compromise talks between the Netanyahu-led far-right cabinet and the opposition to overcome what he termed a "difficult dispute."

The so-called "reforms" seek to tighten political control over judicial appointments and limit the apex court's powers to overturn the cabinet's decisions or Knesset's laws.

The plan was decried by foreign governments, including the Tel Aviv regime's staunch ally, the United States.

Netanyahu's coalition, however, claims that the reforms are needed to curb, what it calls, overreach by judges.

Herzog's speech came on the eve of a debate in the Knesset on the so-called "legal reforms". The session saw thousands of Israelis gather outside the building to protest against the proposed plan.

Protests have been raging on since Netanyahu's new cabinet, dubbed as the most right-wing in the regime's history, took office in late December.

Netanyahu was reinstated as premier after stitching together a coalition of hard-right and ultra-Orthodox parties.

In 2019, Netanyahu became the regime's first sitting prime minister to be indicted over corruption while in office. But he refused to step down.

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