Aviv Kochavi officially takes reins as IDF chief of staff – Netanyahu to Iran: Get out of Syria quickly

Lt. Gen. Aviv Kochavi officially entered the office of the Israel Defense Forces’ chief of staff on Tuesday at a ceremony in the Kiriya military complex in Tel Aviv.

He received the rank of lieutenant general from Prime Minister and Defense Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.

“At the end of 40 years of service and four years as the IDF chief, I conclude a path that became my life’s mission,” said outgoing IDF chief Gadi Eisenkot.

Eisenkot said he sought to leave behind “a fit, prepared and powerful military that bolstered its strength with wisdom and determination.”

Lt. Gen. Aviv Kochavi officially takes reins as IDF chief of staff - Netanyahu to Iran Get out of Syria quickly (4).jpg

Kochavi and Eisenkot will later travel to Jerusalem to visit the Western Wall and have lunch at the President’s Residence. After that, Kochavi will join the IDF’s General Staff for a toast and a goodbye from Eisenkot.

Lt. Gen. Aviv Kochavi officially takes reins as IDF chief of staff - Netanyahu to Iran Get out of Syria quickly (5).jpg

Speaking at the swearing-in ceremony, PM Netanyahu called on Tehran to withdraw forces from Syria, warning Iran of Israeli actions against forces there. “I advise them to leave quickly, because we will continue with our assertive policy, as promised, without fear and without a break.”

Earlier Tuesday, Iran’s Minister of Communications said that Iran conducted a satellite launch, but the satellite has failed to reach orbit.

Netanyahu blasted Iran for lying regarding its failed attempt, claiming that Tehran was not saying the truth and that the satellite launch was the first stage in its effort to launch an intercontinental ballistic missile.