7 Aug 2011

Thousands of Israelis protest over rising living costs

4:09 pm on 7 August 2011

At least a quarter of a million Israelis have staged marches over the rising cost of living.

The largest protest was in Tel Aviv where police said at least 200,000 people were on the streets, while another 30,000 marched in Jerusalem.

In one of biggest waves of protests in decades in Israel, demonstrators are demanding government action to reduce the cost of housing and food.

Police say that as well as Tel Aviv and Jerusalem, an estimated 20,000 people took part in protests in other towns and cities.

It was the third Saturday of protests in a row.

The BBC reports that most of those taking part were middle class professionals who say their salaries cannot cover basic expenses including housing and childcare.

Correspondents say the demonstrations throughout the country have become the biggest internal challenge for the government.