Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's son said on Monday that his father was amused and even invigorated by the protests against him, labeling the demonstrators "aliens."
In an interview with Israel Airwaves Radio, Yair Netanyahu said he showed his father “select parts” from the demonstrations.
"I try and not show him the obscene things because that would be unpleasant, but you know, he finds it entertaining, gives him a bit of strength even," said Netanyahu.
For many weeks, protests have been taking place almost daily across Israel, including outside the home of the premier who was indicted in November 2019 for corruption, fraud and breach of trust in three cases - a first for an incumbent Israeli prime minister.
Protesters called for Netanyahu's departure from office and denounced the government's mismanagement of the coronavirus pandemic.
Netanyahu later backtracked on his statements on Twitter, saying he did not intend to brand all demonstrators as "aliens", but a selected few who arrive at rallies in costumes.
“When I spoke about ‘aliens,’ at the left-wing protests in Jerusalem, I meant those who were dressed up as aliens and UFOs, those who strip, those who dress up as genitals, those who brandish crude signs, those who put a spaghetti pot on their heads and those dressed up as Spider-Man. There are too many of these, and it’s funny," Netanyahu wrote.
In response, the organizers of the protests accused the prime minister’s son of dehumanizing them.
“For the family of the accused, we are not even human — aliens. This is not a prime minister, it’s a criminal suspect for whom the plight of his people is a source of amusement. The protests will continue to grow until he resigns,” they said.
A Jerusalem court ordered Yair Netanyahu on Sunday to stop "harassing" the organizers of protests calling for his father's ouster.
Netanyahu tweeted the personal addresses of the organizers of the protests outside the prime minister's official residence in Jerusalem on Thursday and called for similar demonstrations outside their homes.
"I invite everyone to demonstrate, day and night, in front of the houses of these people who organize anarchy in our country," he tweeted.
Justice Dorit Feinstein demanded the tweet be deleted and added in her ruling that he must "cease harassing protest organizers for six months and no longer publish their private addresses."