Israeli lawmaker Avi Dichter resigned from the Kadima Party and the Knesset in order to join the government as minister of home front defense.
Dichter reportedly sent Knesset Speaker Reuven Rivlin his resignation on Tuesday after being offered the position Monday night during a meeting with Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Defense Minister Ehud Barak. He will replace Matan Vilnai, who on Monday became Israel’s ambassador to China.
Dichter will join the government as an independent, not affiliated with any political party. The former director of Israel’s Shin Bet security service and a former minister of internal security said he is not trying to split the beleaguered Kadima Party, the largest opposition party.
In a post on his Facebook page, Dichter wrote, “Personal and partisan considerations were edged aside and I have chosen to serve the state the best way I can. At this time, I believe that I can do this best in the role of Home Front Defense Minister.”