Massive crowds have packed into one of the largest squares in Tel-Aviv on Saturday to protest over how Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has handled the coronavirus pandemic and its harsh economic fallout.

The rally at Rabin Square, which is a traditional protest spot in the city, was staged by self-employed, small business owners and students, who claim that, unlike salaried workers, they never received financial help that was promised by the government.

The demonstrators, who neglected social-distancing rules, carried banners, which read “Let us breathe” and jokingly asked for charity money to be sent to them via a banking app.

צומת השלום כעת. המשטרה נותנת שלוש דק להתפזרות, יש לי תחושה שזה לא יקרה

The Jerusalem Post reported that the event was attended by some 80,000 people, however other estimations suggest the rally was smaller.

אלפים בכיכר רבין. יש הטוענים שזאת ההפגנה הגדולה ביותר בכיכר מאז שהתפרצה הקורונה בישראל.

“No more games,” Ronen Mili, one of the protest organizers, said. “We waited for four months and haven’t seen a dime.”

Protests against the corruption in Israel. Against CrimeMinister Netanyahu

Israel had imposed strict lockdown measures to stop the spread of Covid-19 in March, banning public gatherings and all entertainment events, while only allowing the most essential specialists to go to work.

The measures were lifted in May under public pressure as the unemployment rate reached a staggering 21 percent. But the restrictions had to be reinstated as the virus made a comeback.

Israel, which is populated by nine million people, has registered 37,000 coronavirus cases, with 350 fatalities. Netanyahu recently said that the country is “in a state of emergency” over Covid-19.

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