Cabinet paves way for new state attorney

The cabinet on Sunday voted to exclude a retired Supreme Court justice from the composition of the committee appointed to nominate a new state attorney, paving the way for a five-person committee to recommend a replacement for outgoing State Attorney Eran Shendar. Shendar was due to retire this summer, after completing three years of his six-year term. The decision to exclude a retired justice altogether from the search committee came as a compromise between Attorney-General Menahem Mazuz and Justice Minister Daniel Friedmann. According to the last government decision on the matter before Sunday's, the president of the Supreme Court chose a retired justice to sit on the search committee. Friedmann originally insisted that instead of the Supreme Court president, he be the one to choose the retired justice. Mazuz disagreed. The two reached a compromise by omitting the retired justice from the search committee altogether. Friedmann also temporarily gave in to Mazuz over the question of how many candidates the search committee should recommend to the government. Mazuz insisted on recommending one candidate in keeping with the most recent government decision. Friedmann had originally demanded the right to ask the search committee to make two or three recommendations for the government to choose from. He said he reserved the right to raise the demand in the future. With the exclusion of the retired justice, the search committee now includes Mazuz (chairman), Civil Service Commissioner Ya'acov Hollander, the director-general of the ministry of justice and one representative each from the Israel Bar and the universities.