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Saturday, April 23, 2011

Dorit Beinisch

(Israel Twitter)Dorit Beinisch ( דורית ביניש‎) (b. 1942) is the president of the Supreme Court of Israel. She was appointed to the position on September 14, 2006, after the retirement of Aharon Barak. She is the first woman to serve as president of the Supreme Court.
Beinisch began her long public service career when she joined the Ministry of Justice in 1967. She served in the Ministry of Justice for 28 years, holding the most senior positions and becoming the first woman in Israel to serve in these positions.
n September 2006 Beinisch was sworn in as President of the Supreme Court of Israel, after being voted in unanimously, becoming the first woman in Israeli history to hold this position. As President of the Supreme Court, she is the head of the Israeli judiciary and responsible for managing the court system. Beinisch believes that one of her primary tasks is to safeguard the independence of the Israeli court system and ensure its apolitical character, and she stands out in her struggle to promote the system’s institutional independency.
In her rulings, Beinisch emphasized the same principles that she fought for during her public career, together with her belief regarding the role of the Supreme Court in a democratic society to protect human and civil rights, with special attention to the rights of women and children, socially vulnerable populations, and immigrant workers. Beinisch emphasizes the importance of judicial review of the activities of the executive branch, including the military, as well as the importance of following the rule of law and the principle of non-discriminatory law enforcement, and preserving every person's right of access to court.
Beinisch has focused on government corruption and to ensuring that government institutions adhere to the law, with a particular emphasis placed on the IDF, the police and general security services.
Among her many notable rulings as a Supreme Court Justice is a decision holding that parents cannot use corporal punishment. Corporal punishment, she wrote, violated the child's right to dignity and bodily integrity.
In a 2006 case concerning a detainee’s right to legal counsel, the Supreme Court acquitted a soldier convicted of using drugs on the basis of his own confession, because the military policeman who interrogated him did not inform him of his right to consult with an attorney. Beinisch ruled that in view of the normative change in the Israeli legal system introduced by the Basic Law: Human Dignity and Liberty, the time has come to adopt a case law doctrine of inadmissibility for illegally obtained evidence. She also held that the appropriate doctrine for the Israeli legal system to adopt is not an absolute one, but a relative doctrine which allows the court to exclude illegally obtained evidence at its discretion.

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