Toru Ishikawa, chief of staff of the Maritime Self-Defense Force, will replace Shoji Takegouchi as chairman of the Joint Staff Council of the Self-Defense Forces, the Defense Agency announced Tuesday.

The personnel change will take effect Jan. 28.

Ishikawa, 58, joined the MSDF in 1967 after graduating from the National Defense Academy. He served in posts such as commander of the MSDF’s Sasebo District in Nagasaki Prefecture before taking his current position in March 2001.

The council consists of the chiefs of staff of the Ground, Maritime and Air Self-Defense Forces and is tasked with coordinating the three forces.

Koichi Furusho, current deputy chief of staff of the MSDF, will be promoted as MSDF chief of staff, the agency said.

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