Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has appointed former military chief Moshe Yaalon as Defence Minister.

Mr. Yaalon, widely known by his nickname “Bogie,” has said the Iranian nuclear program is Israel’s top security concern.

He also is known to hold hard-line views toward the Palestinians.

Mr. Yaalon was Israel’s military chief from 2002 to 2005, and served as vice premier in Israel’s outgoing government. In that position, he served in Mr. Netanyahu’s security Cabinet, which dealt with sensitive matters.

Mr. Yaalon will replace Defence Minister Ehud Barak, who is retiring.

Mr. Netanyahu said on Sunday that Mr. Yaalon has the experience to lead the country’s defence during a “decisive period for the security of Israel, as the region around us rages.” The new government is to be sworn in Monday.

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