OC Air Force Maj.-Gen. Amir Eshel appointed a new head to the Air Defense Command this week.

Brig.-Gen. Shahar Shohat replaces Brig.-Gen. Doron Gavish, after the latter completed his term as head of the force.

The inauguration ceremony on Sunday took place against the background of growing Hezbollah and Hamas rocket arsenals, and an Iranian-Hezbollah drone which recently penetrated Israeli airspace.

“The combination of new regimes and terror organizations armed with advanced weaponry which were once reserved for militaries alone, creates a threat to the heart of our state and way of life,” Eshel warned during the ceremony.

“The Air Defense Command has a vital role in all of the components that make up [our] security concept – defense capabilities together with attack components enable victory,” the air force commander added.

Eshel praised Gavish for leading the nation’s air defenses to “new horizons.”

He added that air defenses have been upgraded significantly over recent years, from tactical cannons to a strategic system capable of multi-layered interception.

Gavish noted that Israeli air defenses intercepted 109 enemy rockets fired at southern Israel from the Gaza Strip in recent years. “This is a firsttime operational achievement on a global scale,” he said.

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