Israeli army cancels promotion of general accused of rape

Marcy Oster

JERUSALEM (JTA) — The Israeli military canceled the promotion of an Israeli general accused of raping a female soldier and sexually harassing another.

Brig.-Gen. Ofek Buchris was to head the Operations Division, a prominent position in the Israel Defense Forces, but Chief of Staff Lt. Gen. Gadi Eisenkot recalled the nomination on Thursday.

Buchris was suspended last week for two weeks from his temporary post with the army’s Command and Staff College, but Eisenkot extended the suspension by another month in deference to the investigation, according to the IDF.

Buchris reportedly was on a shortlist of potential IDF chief-of-staff candidates down the line. He reportedly took and passed two privately funded polygraph tests, and has been questioned several times by a military investigative unit.

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As commander of the Golani Brigade from 2010 to 2012, Buchris was suspected of having raped and sexually abused the first soldier. As the Golani’s battalion commander, he was critically injured during Operation Defensive Shield in 2002 and was awarded a citation for his bravery.

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