Court rejects Galant appeal as PM explains Gantz decision

Netanyahu praises rejected IDF chief of General Staff candidate's contribution to the state but says he decided to appoint Gantz to position because "the stability of the IDF is important at this time."

February 6, 2011 11:32
2 minute read.
PM Netanyahu at the weekly cabinet meeting

Netanyahu leaning 311. (photo credit: Emile Salman)

Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu on Sunday said that he "understands the magnitude of the disappointment" felt by Maj.-Gen. Yoav Galant in the wake of the cancellation of his appointment to IDF chief of General Staff.

Speaking at the weekly cabinet meeting, Netanyahu said that Galant is "a talented and experienced commander and warrior who greatly contributed to the state."

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The prime minister also addressed his decision to appoint Maj.-Gen. Benny Gantz to IDF chief of General Staff, saying "the stability of the IDF is important at this time and therefore I decided over the weekend to make a determination on the issue of appointing a new chief of staff."

Also Sunday morning, the High Court of Justice rejected an appeal by Galant, in which he requested to freeze the appointment process for the position while his petition to the High Court against the cancellation of his appointment as IDF chief was being discussed.

Galant requested that the court issue an order that will freeze the appointment process, giving the Turkel Comittee a second opportunity to discuss his appointment.

Galant wrote in his petition to the High Court that the government does not have the authority to cancel his appointment. The authority to cancel or approve appointments to the position lies solely with the Turkel Committee, according to the petition.

Judge Eliakim Rubinstein did not issue an interm order which would have frozen the process and said that Galant's claim against the cancellation of his appointment will be brought before High Court justices on Tuesday.

Under the ruling, the appointment of Gantz will be allowed to continue, while Galant's petition will be debated.

"The attorney-general will clarify to the government that the petition is pending," Rubinstein said.

In the race to replace Lt.- Gen. Gabi Ashkenazi, Gantz originally lost out to Galant, who has since been forced to forfeit his nomination due to the land affair connected to his home in the town of Amikam in northern Israel.

Gantz’s appointment will first be presented to the Turkel Committee and, if cleared, will be presented to the cabinet for final approval.

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