אביחי מנדלבליט
Attorney General Avichai Mandelblit
Photo: Dana Kopel
Attorney General Avichai Mandelblit

Mandelblit to Supreme Court: Government must obey the law

AG last week told Likud ministers that government has no authority over the Knesset, judicial source says attorney general is the last line of defense against violation of human rights and the rule of law, and is involved in all regulatory decisions

Tova Tsimuki |
Published: 03.22.20 , 11:22
Attorney General Avichai Mandelblit warned Sunday that democracy is being tested and said that he would to safeguard Israel's democratic political system.
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  • "Now more than ever, we must stand guard to ensure government actions are taken in accordance with the law," wrote Mandelblit in a letter to the Supreme Court.
    The court is set to hear motions against certain government actions taken to slow the spread of coronavirus, such as digital surveillance.
    אביחי מנדלבליטאביחי מנדלבליט
    Attorney General Avichai Mandelblit
    (Photo: Dana Kopel)
    Late last week, Mandelblit blocked an effort by Benjamin Netanyahu's Likud party to include the Knesset among workplaces that must limit their activity and the number of people gathered at any one time.
    Likud ministers Dudi Amsalem, Ze'ev Elkin and Yariv Levin, all close allies of Netanyahu, argued in a cabinet meeting Thursday that that Knesset activity should be suspended in accordance with Health Ministry guidelines.
    But Mandeblit came out against the initiative, claiming that the government has no authority over parliament and Knesset activity must continue, while guidelines limiting the number of people in one room and other restrictions can be observed.
    מליאת הכנסתמליאת הכנסת
    Knesset plenum
    (Photo: Knesset Channel)
    "The attorney general's office is working around the clock," said a judicial source.
    "Mandelblit is ensuring human rights and the rule of law are maintained," he said, describing the attorney general as the last line of defense in ensuring the law is observed.
    "No regulations are introduced without the approval of the attorney general's office, including the suspension of tenders for specific medical equipment and the use of drugs for non-specified use to be administered to coronavirus patients," the source said.
    "Staffers are assisting in lifting some red tape and regulations to speed up processes to ensure the supply of vital goods for public consumption and more."

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