Benjamin Netanyahu sacks Cabinet ally, respecting court ruling

TEL AVIV: Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu fired a key Cabinet ally on Sunday, heeding a Supreme Court ordering it to do so and deepening the rift around the power of the courts.
A statement from Netanyahu’s office said the Israeli leader had sacked Interior and Health Minister Aryeh Deri, who the court ruled could not serve as minister due to a conviction last year for tax crimes.
The court ruling came as Israel is mired in a dispute over the power of the judiciary. Netanyahu’s far-right government wants to weaken the Supreme Court, limit judicial review and give more power to politicians. Critics say the move upsets the country’s system of checks and balances and jeopardizes Israel’s democratic fundamentals.

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