Culture Minister Miri Regev (Likud) criticized on Monday attempts by Attorney General Yehuda Weinstein, who is also Legal Adviser to the Government, to scuttle a government decision making it easier to fire on terrorists.
"The decision by the Legal Adviser to the Government not to make the open fire instructions more lenient is beyond his authority,” Regev argued.
"The government is the body that determines whether open-fire instructions against rioters are changed, and what fines and punishments will be meted out upon those lawbreakers who hurl rocks and firebombs at civilians,” she stated. “It is unacceptable that clerks and legal advisers will run the country.”
Justice Minister Ayelet Shaked said Monday that she intends to go ahead and present legislation on minimum sentences for Arab rock-throwers on Thursday.
Shaked played down reports that Attorney General Yehuda Weinstein is locked in combat with the government over the latter's attempts to pass legislation mandating minimum sentences for rock and firebomb terror, and giving soldiers and police more leeway in opening fire on such terrorists.
The minister said that "someone" has been briefing the press in a way that made it seem as if there was a “drama” between ministers and Weinstein, when in fact there has only been a normal dialogue.
Shaked added that Weinstein thinks that since recent legislation has determined that throwing rocks is punishable by ten years' jail time even without proof of intent to injure, it would be better to let the new legislation take effect before passing minimum sentence laws. This is a reasonable opinion, she said, but one she disagrees with.
"The government is the sovereign and it makes decisions – even if they are contrary to the opinions of the legal experts,” said Shaked.