New Health Minister Yael German said at her change-of-the- guard ceremony at ministry headquarters in Jerusalem on Tuesday that she didn’t understand how the job seemed to be “so undesirable” among MKs. Israel has “a good health system that has a reputation all over the world. I hope that when I leave here, the job will be the most desirable in the government,” she said. “I came to learn, and I intend to devote many hours [a day] to it,” said the former longtime mayor of Herzliya.

“I am not necessarily speaking of changes, but there are topics in which I intend to set down a new policy. My challenge is that from now on, the Israeli health system will be recognized as excellent not only around the world but also in Israel,” said German, who took over from United Torah Judaism MK Ya’acov Litzman, who ran the ministry as a deputy minister, while Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu was formally minister.

Litzman, who had wanted very much to continue in his post, said he was leaving it with “much satisfaction, a raised head and a lot of pride.”

He thanked his director-general Prof. Ronni Gamzu and ministry staffers for their devotion and wished German success.

Space technology will have a major focus in the Science and Technology Ministry, said Minister Yaakov Peri, taking over from Prof. Daniel Herschkowitz on Tuesday. Peri said he would work to ensure that innovation, space research, cyber, science and technology “will continue to be at the forefront of Israel’s achievements.”

Israel Space Agency chairman Yitzhak Ben-Yisrael welcomed the new minister and said there is “no need to explain to me who headed the General Security Services” – as Peri did for years – how much security is dependent on science and technology.

“I am sure he will lead the ministry to many successes,” he said.

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