Friedmann set to meet rival Beinisch in High Court

The new justice minister conferred on Thursday for the first time in his new capacity with Attorney-General Mazuz.

dorit beinisch 88 298 (photo credit: Ariel Jerozolimski)
dorit beinisch 88 298
(photo credit: Ariel Jerozolimski)
Justice Minister Daniel Friedmann is due to meet with Supreme Court President Dorit Beinisch next Tuesday after having conferred on Thursday for the first time in his new capacity with Attorney-General Menahem Mazuz. Friedmann and Beinisch have not spoken to each other since their public feud in 2003 over the appointment of Prof. Nili Cohen to the Supreme Court. Friedmann and Beinisch will have to work together to fill the five vacancies on the Supreme Court. The Judicial Selection Committee is due to meet in March to begin making these appointments. Another meeting of the committee has been set for February 27 to make lower court appointments. The conversation between Friedmann and Mazuz at the Justice Ministry in Jerusalem was a private one. Their spokesmen, Tzahi Moshe and Moshe Cohen, said they had no information about it. According to the news Web site Ynet, the talk lasted 90 minutes. Friedmann reportedly told Mazuz his decisions would be based on the issue at hand without any extraneous considerations and that he did not intend to shake up the judicial system. Ynet quoted Justice Ministry officials as saying the meeting was good and that it soothed the tensions between the two men. Last week, in an article in the daily Yediot Aharonot, Friedmann blasted Mazuz, the state prosecution, the police and the court for indicting and convicting Haim Ramon on charges of committing an indecent act against a female soldier in the Prime Minister's Office in Tel Aviv. In a related development, Mazuz rejected a complaint by the watchdog organization Ometz against Friedmann. Ometz asked Mazuz to launch a criminal investigation over the Yediot Aharonot article. The organization's chairman, Aryeh Avneri, accused Friedmann of violating sub judice by trying to influence Tel Aviv District Court into overturning Ramon's lower court conviction by lashing out at Mazuz and the others. Mazuz wrote to Avneri that the state was reluctant to prosecute in matters related to freedom of speech, particularly true with regard to sub judice.