Judicial C'tee to discuss justice appointments

Committee to decide on approval of candidates to Supreme Court, including nominations of judges Zvi Zylbertal, Dvora Berliner and Noam Sohlberg.

November 20, 2011 15:51
1 minute read.
Supreme Court President Dorit Beinisch

Supreme Court President Dorit Beinisch 311. (photo credit: Dudi Vaknin / Pool)

The Judicial Selection Committee is set to meet at 5 p.m. Sunday to discuss the appointment of new justices to the Supreme Court. Justice Minister Yaakov Neeman will convene the committee, which will discuss the nominations of judges Zvi Zylbertal, Dvora Berliner and Noam Sohlberg.

The Supreme Court is understaffed following Justice Ayala Procaccia's retirement in April and Edmund Levi's  in March. Supreme Court President Dorit Beinisch is also due to retire in February 2012, and the committee will also have to name her replacement soon.

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However, the committee may decide not to make any appointments on Sunday, largely because of the ongoing controversy surrounding the appointment of Sohlberg, who is considered a conservative judge. Beinisch and Neeman have been unable to agree over Sohlberg's appointment, and if that situation continues, it is possible that the voting will be delayed until after Beinisch retires in February.

The nine-member Judicial Selection Committee consists of three Supreme Court justices (Dorit Beinisch, Miriam Naor, and Asher Dan Grunis), two representatives from the Israel Bar Committee (Rachel Ben Ari and Pini Marinsky), and four politicians, including two ministers (Justice Minister Yaakov Neeman and Environmental Protection Minister Gilad Erdan) and two MKs, David Rotem (Israel Beiteinu) and Uri Ariel (National Union).

To be appointed to the Supreme Court, candidates require seven out of the total of nine votes from the committee.

Committee member MK Uri Ariel (National Union), who backs Sohlberg, said that the Supreme Court is under great pressure because it lacks sufficient justices to cope with its already heavy caseload, and so the committee must vote this week.

"I believe that the Supreme Court President (Beinisch) also understands this and will decide to vote, any other situation would cause even more backlogs [in court proceedings] which would harm the public," said Ariel.

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