ISRAEL AT WAR - DAY 142

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11 Likud MKs submit bill to split up, limit powers of attorney general

Attorney General Gali Baharav-Miara speaks during a conference at the University of Haifa, December 15, 2022. (Shir Torem/ Flash90)
Attorney General Gali Baharav-Miara speaks during a conference at the University of Haifa, December 15, 2022. (Shir Torem/ Flash90)

Days after passing the first major judicial overhaul bill and with the country still reeling from that legislative earthquake, coalition MKs have submitted a new bill to the Knesset sure to be highly contentious: one to split up the role of the attorney general and hand over the powers to prosecute members of the cabinet to the state attorney.

Eleven Likud lawmakers co-sponsored the bill, which says the attorney general, while also serving as legal adviser to the cabinet, faces a potential conflict of interest when called upon to potentially investigate individuals with whom he or she is closely familiar, and is thus hard-pressed to remain objective on such matters.

The bill would take effect only after the next election.

Likud officials tell Kan news the bill was submitted for legal review several weeks ago and has now been approved for filing. They assert that it will not be advanced without broad agreement on the matter.

Opponents of the coalition have long feared it may seek to dismiss or sideline Attorney General Gali Baharav-Miara, who has often opposed the government’s positions on various matters, and particularly on its efforts to curtail the judiciary.

Several members of the cabinet have repeatedly said she should be fired, sometimes to her face.

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