New IDF chief of staff Lieutenant-General Gadi Eizenkot (L) and outgoing chief of staff Lieutenant-General Benny Gantz (R) salute during a handover ceremony in Tel Aviv.
(photo credit: REUTERS)
The chiefs of the Israel Air Force and Israel Navy have extended their service in the IDF by a year, the military announced Wednesday, as part of a series of appointments carried out by the newly appointed chief of staff, Lt.-Gen. Gadi Eisenkot.
Both IAF chief Maj.-Gan. Amir Eshel and the commander of the navy, V.-Adm. Ram Rothberg, are to remain in their positions for a year, a move that will enable younger major-generals to replace them in 2016.
Eisenkot’s appointments, approved by Defense Minister Moshe Ya’alon, include a new Southern Command head, Maj.-Gen. Eyal Zamir, who will replace Maj.-Gen. Shlomo “Sami” Turgeman, who completes a two-year term in the post, and who was in command during the 50-day conflict with Hamas and Islamic Jihad in Gaza last summer.
Brig.-Gen. Amikam Nurkin will be promoted to the rank of major-general before taking up his new post as chief of air force headquarters, replacing Maj.-Gen. Nimrod Shefer, who served in the position for three years.
Eisenkot named Maj.-Gen. Tamir Heiman as the new commander of the IDF Military Colleges, replacing Maj.- Gen. Yossi Beiditz. Heiman will also serve simultaneously as commander of the Northern Corps, a military formation that is deployed during wartime.
As a result of the appointments, the General Staff has two fewer members.
Last year, IDF chief of staff Lt.- Gen. Benny Gantz named a new Military Intelligence chief, appointing Maj.-Gen. Herzl Levi to the job.
Levi replaced Maj.-Gen. Aviv Kochavi, who became OC Northern Command, replacing Maj.-Gen. Yair Golan, who was appointed deputy chief of staff.