(photo credit: Ariel Jerozolimski)
Former deputy Supreme Court president Justice Mishael Cheshin lambasted Justice Minister Daniel Friedmann on Friday over his proposal to change the procedure for appointing future attorneys-general, which will be discussed in Sunday's weekly cabinet meeting.
Cheshin told Israel Radio that Friedmann's efforts were undermining the law and compared the justice minister to Sennacherib, king of Assyria, saying Friedmann was leaving a similar trail of destruction behind him.
"Friedmann does not understand public justice and was not appointed over [Attorney-General Menahem] Mazuz," Cheshin said.
Friedmann proposed that the head of the committee that will select Mazuz's successor be nominated by the justice minister rather than by the Supreme Court president. That representative would be selected by Friedmann rather than by Supreme Court President Dorit Beinisch, as current procedures mandate.
In response, Friedmann said, "The government, which, after all, is responsible for the appointment, is required [under the current arrangement] to leave the matter in the hands of the Supreme Court president. She has a pool of judges [to choose] from, some of whom are problematic... some of the judges have heard cases in which lawyers closely associated with them are involved."
Friedmann also proposed that the committee be permitted to nominate at least three candidates for him to choose from.
Cheshin called on ministers and community leaders to oppose Friedmann's proposal, which he described as injurious to the rule of law.
Cheshin went on to say that Friedmann was trying to harm the Supreme Court and its authority, and said he should resign.
On Thursday, Mazuz called on the cabinet to reject Friedmann's proposal.