On Thursday, fifty one academics, intellectuals and artists, including several Israel Prize laureates, called on Supreme Court President Dorit Beinisch to oppose the arrangement that would enable Judge Noam Solberg to be appointed to the Supreme Court. The Judicial Selection Committee is due to convene on Sunday evening, and Beinisch's position is still unknown.

Beinisch may support the proposed deal - that would also approve one of her favored candidates to the Supreme Court - but even if she opposes it or abstains she might allow the other judges on the committee to vote as they please, thus enabling the deal to go through.

Solberg lives in a West Bank settlement and is supported by the Israeli right, who believe that the Supreme Court doesn't fairly represent all segments and opinions of Israeli society.

The appeal - signed by Professors Chaim Adler, Haim Ganz, Yaron Ezrahi, Joseph Agassi, Yehuda Bauer, Miriam Ben-Peretz and Itamar Procaccia as well as artists and writers such as Dani Karavan, Sefi Rachlevsky, David Tartakover, Joshua Sobol and Yoram Kaniuk - called on Beinisch to resist Justice Minister Yaakov Neeman's legislation against the Supreme Court and oppose the proposed deal. "This isn't the time for deals and compromises with Neeman, especially the appointment of Solberg at the Judicial Selection Committee. First one must stop the systematic actions aimed at destroying the [judicial] system ... and the principle of separation of powers," read the letter they sent to Beinisch, who is due to retire in January.

A copy of the petition was sent to several government ministers, including Dan Meridor, Michael Eitan, Ehud Barak and Benny Begin.