AG says virus restrictions don’t prevent Knesset deliberations

Attorney General Avichai Mandelblit says that Health Ministry directives meant to contain the coronavirus do not prevent the Knesset plenum or committees from holding deliberations.

He also says it’s imperative that the Arrangements Committee, which deals with procedural parliamentary issues, be established right away to allow the newly sworn-in Knesset to function.

Mandelblit is responding to a High Court petition filed against Knesset Speaker Yuli Edelstein’s decision last week to close the Knesset until tomorrow, citing disagreements over the formation of the Arrangements Committee and the Health Ministry restrictions.

In a separate legal opinion filed with the court, Knesset legal adviser Eyal Yinon appears to say that Edelstein cannot block a vote on choosing a new speaker.

“A situation in which an unelected Knesset speaker serves only by virtue of the principle of continuity is likely to lead to a result in which the current majority in the Knesset finds it difficult to advance moves that it wants,” Yinon writes.

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