A group of Israelis describing themselves as reservists in elite military and intelligence units said they would not turn up for some duties from Sunday (Mar 19), escalating protests at the hard-right government’s planned judicial overhaul.

Members of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s coalition, which wields a Knesset majority, say they want Bills that would limit the authority of the Supreme Court to be written into law by Apr 2.

The plan has stirred concern for Israel’s democratic health at home and abroad. As ratification nears, demonstrations have spiralled, the shekel has slipped and fears have been voiced by national security veterans who usually shy from public exposure.