Defense Minister Ehud Barak met with IDF Chief of General Staff Lt.-Gen. Gabi Ashkenazi on Tuesday and urged him to remain in office until the end of his four-year term in February, 2011.
Barak’s request came two days after announcing that OC Southern Command Maj.-Gen. Yoav Galant will be the next IDF chief of General Staff amid speculation that Ashkenazi, miffed by the appointment of his successor six months before the end of his term, would resign prematurely. Officials said that Barak praised Ashkenazi for his contributions to the IDF and asked that he remain in office until the end of his term.
Earlier in the day, Ashkenazi met with Galant for their first meeting since Barak’s announcement on Sunday. One of the first issues the two will have to coordinate is the expected round of appointments of officers to high-ranking positions at the rank of brigadier general.