Channel 10 CEO Yossi Warshavsky resigned yesterday after four years in office, saying he no longer had the strength to fight for the deficit-stricken channel's survival.

Warshavsky will be replaced by Channel 10 CFO Yoav Heldman.

"It would be wrong to imply [anything] from my move regarding the channel's future...but I feel I have exhausted my strength," Warshavsky wrote in a message to the channel's staff. "After four stormy years and several survival crises I feel I am no longer able to lead a relentless battle on all fronts in an industry affected by market failure and an unbalanced regulatory structure."

In the past year Channel 10 has been undergoing a major crisis, since its share holders cut off funding. A NIS 60 million debt and the Second Television and Radio Authority's threat not to extend its franchise are keeping potential investors away.

The Knesset's Economic Affairs Committee refused several times to spread out the channel's debt and sources in Channel 10 have accused people in the prime minister's office of wanting to close it down.

For the past months the channel has delayed paying suppliers and workers' wages.

In addition, several of Channel 10's senior news anchors and directors have resigned, such as news director Reudor Benziman and "This Week" editor Ruti Yovel. About two months ago Yaakov Eilon, the channel's main news anchor since its establishment, quit.

Channel 10's chairman and controlling shareholder Joseph Maiman said, "I regretfully received Yossi's request to resign...but I understand and share his feelings about the impossibility of the commercial television industry in Israel."