Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu fired his defense minister on Sunday, just a day after he called on the embattled premier to halt a controversial plan to overhaul the country’s judiciary.

The proposal to remake Israel’s courts has plunged the nation into crisis, spurring protests in major cities in recent weeks. On Sunday, Netanyahu’s decision to remove Yoav Gallant, a fellow Likud Party member, prompted at least 150 demonstrations across Israel, according to police.

Crowds gathered around the Knesset building in Jerusalem after police deployed water cannons near Netanyahu’s residence in Jerusalem. Some demonstrators hoisted Israeli flags and shouted, “De-mo-cra-cy!” while others set fire to a major highway.

...Itamar Ben Gvir, the far-right national security minister, another once-fringe settler extremist, has come out in support of the reform, saying that Gallant had “surrendered to the blackmail of the anarchists” — a word he has frequently used to describe the demonstrators.

Ben Gvir has vowed to advance legislation that would cancel Netanyahu’s ongoing corruption trial, in which he has been indicted in three separate cases and faces potential prison time.