Justice Minister to AG:
'If we reach Supreme Court, I'm ready for fight'

Justice Minister Amir Ohana makes clear Attorney Orly Ben Ari Ginsberg will be appointed Deputy State Prosecutor, even if petition is filed.

Mordechai Sones ,

Justice Minister Ohana, AG Mandelblit, and State Attorney Shai Nitzan
Justice Minister Ohana, AG Mandelblit, and State Attorney Shai Nitzan
Flash 90

Justice Minister Amir Ohana today clarified that he does not accept the opinion of Attorney General Avichai Mandelblit, who stated there is a legal impediment to appointing Attorney Orly Ginsberg Ben-Ari as Deputy State Prosecutor.

In a Galei Tzahal interview Ohana said: "If the issue of Orly Ginsberg Ben-Ari's appointment reaches the Supreme Court, I'm ready for the fight. I find it difficult to imagine the claims that the Attorney General might make."

Ohana rejected allegations of outside considerations in the nomination process, stressing, "I haven't spoken to Attorney Orly Ginsberg Ben-Ari or with any of those presiding over Netanyahu's files."

In the same context, Ohana wondered, "The Attorney General is the authority on Netanyahu's files. So what's the concern? Can she do something against his will?"

On the argument that Ginsberg Ben-Ari is not senior enough to accept the appointment, Ohana replied "Orly Ben Ari has more experience than Shai Nitzan did when he was appointed State Attorney."

The appointment of Ginsberg Ben-Ari to serve as interim state prosecutor came despite Attorney General Avichai Mandelblit’s opposition. Mandelblit had pushed for the appointment of Shlomo Lemberger, the Deputy Prosecutor for Criminal Matters, and had rejected the four other candidates considered for the position, reportedly threatening to take the matter to court if any candidate other than Lemberger was selected. Choosing the Deputy State Prosecutor, however, usually after a committee vets suitable candidates, is the purview of the Justice Minister, who then presents his recommendation to the government.

Ginsberg Ben-Ari’s appointment is temporary, and must be renewed every three months, since she is being appointed by a minister (Ohana) appointed during a caretaker government.