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Israeli social justice protests continue

Aug. 14, 2011 at 8:14 AM

HAIFA, Israel, Aug. 14 (UPI) -- Tens of thousands of Israelis demanding social justice have staged protests across the country for the fourth consecutive week.

An estimated 70,000 people attended demonstrations Saturday night after a decision was made to hold protests outside of Jerusalem and Tel Aviv. The protests are part of the social justice movement that has erected tent cities in towns and cities demanding equality and an end to rising costs, Ynetnews.com and Haaretz reported.

The largest protest was in Haifa, which drew more 25,000 Israelis and Arabs, Ynetnews.com said. Protests were also in Beersheba, Rosh Pina, Beit She'an Nazareth, Nahariya, Netanya, Rishon Lezion, Ashkelon, Dimona and Eilat.

Protesters want a halt to rising food costs, affordable housing for all, free education in elementary schools and control of university tuition fees.

Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu has formed a team to investigate the protesters' demands and is expected to receive its recommendations within a month.

Professor Manuel Trachtenberg, the chairman of the Planning and Budgeting Committee of the Council for Higher Education, was appointed to head the team.

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