TEL AVIV: Artist Itay Zalait shows his protest art installation depicting Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu sitting on a table for the “Last Supper”.—AFP
TEL AVIV: Artist Itay Zalait shows his protest art installation depicting Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu sitting on a table for the “Last Supper”.—AFP

TEL AVIV: An Israeli artist mocked Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Wednesday in a re-enactment of “The Last Supper” installed in central Tel Aviv, a day after people protesting against him in the city were beaten and bloodied.

Artist Itay Zalait said the piece in Tel Aviv’s Rabin Square, featuring a Netanyahu likeness perch­­ed over a long dining table and seated in front of a cake, represents “the last meal of Israeli democracy.” Netanyahu is “the man who dined his heart (out) when the State of Israel beat a million unemployed people hungry for bread,” Zalait told reporters.

Protests have grown against the veteran premier over his handling of the coronavirus pandemic and the devastating economic crisis it has caused.

The prime minister has been accused of leading a chaotic virus containment strategy as cases have surged and economically painful initial restrictions have been reimposed.

Netanyahu says he has tried to strike a balance between protecting the economy and stemming transmission, a challenge faced by leaders across the world.

Crowds of thousands have gathered in Tel Aviv and outside the prime minister’s Jerusalem residence in recent weeks, with some demonstrators demanding Netanyahu’s resignation.

Tuesday’s rallies were smaller than previous demonstrations, but the one in Tel Aviv turned violent.

Published in Dawn, July 30th, 2020