Chief of Staff at Naval Academy graduation ceremony
Chief of Staff at Naval Academy graduation ceremonyIDF Spokesperson's Unit

The graduation ceremony of the 143rd Naval Academy's Course was held on Sunday at the Haifa Naval base. 38 naval academy graduates completed the officers' course, during which they completed their academic studies at the University of Haifa.

The Naval officers who completed the course - the next generation of naval officers - will be assigned as commanders to a variety of advanced vessels: missile ships, patrol boats and submarines.

The ceremony was presided over by the Chief of the General Staff, LTG Aviv Kohavi, and was attended by the Commander in Chief of the Israeli Navy, VAdm. David Saar Salama, commanders, sailors, families and other guests.

Graduates of the course were trained for naval combat officer's positions, having acquired professional and leadership skills, and proficiency in some of the most advanced technological systems in the world. During the ceremony, the naval officer's pin was awarded to the graduates of the course and they received the rank of lieutenant junior grade.

Kohavi said during the ceremony, "Dear graduates, you are embarking on a new path, as naval officers at the forefront of the Israeli Navy, you will have many challenges and our response to them is now in your hands as well. Over the past 28 months you have undergone one of the most complex and high-quality training programs in the IDF. You have overcome physical, intellectual, professional and operational challenges. You are now at the end of a long and formative period. We trust you and have faith that you will rise to any challenge."

"In the past week, the IDF has operated to recapture the escaped prisoners and continues to work shoulder to shoulder with the police, the ISA and the Israeli Prison Service. Four of the prisoners have already been captured and it is only a matter of time before the Israeli Security Forces and the IDF apprehend the remaining two prisoners," he added.

"We will not rest until the last of the terrorists are captured."

"We will not allow the terrorist organizations in Judea and Samaria, and the Gaza Strip to use this incident as motive for harming the civilians of the State of Israel. The IDF will defend the border with the Gaza Strip from any attack against Israel. The IDF operates in a vigorous manner, and will continue its strong response to any violation. The IDF will forcefully react to any further escalation by Hamas in the Gaza Strip," stressed the Chief of Staff.

"Being an officer in the IDF is a privilege that entails multiple responsibilities - to protect the State of Israel and to lead people in routine, emergency and war. This is a heavy responsibility, and I trust you very much. Raise the anchor, perform your missions with determination and return home safely," concluded Kohavi.

Commander in Chief of the Israeli Navy VAdm. David Saar Salama said, "We have been blessed with a new group of officers, that will perform to the best of their ability in order to advance the missile ships and submarines - with fresh ways of thinking and great effort. First and foremost, you are expected to provide personal, commanding, educational and leader-like attention."

"Dear graduates, you have arrived at this exciting moment thanks to your courage, willingness to volunteer, your great skills, your knowledge of the highest quality of technology and the ability to work as a team. Israel faces security threats and risks - the navy, as part of the IDF and as a key component in its power, is aware of the mission, a quick and decisive victory in any conflict. Our ability to deal with the operational challenges we face rests on the same initial components on which the navy was founded - a deep understanding of the meaning of our work, love for our people, our sea and our land," he added.