Hundreds of Israel reserve doctors suspend military services to protest judicial overhaul

Middle East Monitor  /  July 15, 2023

Hundreds of Israeli reserve doctors have suspended their military services in the Israeli army in protest against the Israeli far-right government’s plan to weaken the judiciary, Rai al-Youm reported on Friday.

The doctors, including physicians and psychiatrists, penned a letter to the Military Medicine Club asking it to send an urgent message to the army leadership to update them on the doctors’ action.

The Military Medicine Club called for the government to stop the judicial overhaul plan before it is too late.

Meanwhile, on Thursday, over a thousand doctors sent a letter to chair of the Israel Medical Association, Zion Hagay, urging him to declare a strike until the “complete trashing of the overhaul.”

According to The Times of Israel, the overhaul plans will harm: “The quality of medicine in Israel, will harm patients, and undermine the great achievements of Israeli medicine.”

Hundreds of medical students also issued a plea to Hagay to call a strike over the proposals: “It will cause a brain drain, Israel’s academic isolation and allow political officials to take control of medical education and research in Israel.”

Protests have been organized on a weekly basis through Israel since Israeli Justice Minister Yariv Levin announced the overhaul package in January, less than a week after the right-wing coalition government took office.