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Brazil president names general to lead Defense Ministry

Brazil president names general to lead Defense Ministry

Sao Paulo, June 13 : Brazilian President Michel Temer has named a general to the position of defense minister, the first time a military officer has held the post since it was created in 1999.

Reserve Gen. Joaquim Silva e Luna has been serving as the interim defense minister since February, when the incumbent was tapped to lead the newly created Ministry of Public Security. Silva e Luna’s permanent nomination to the position was published Wednesday in the government’s official gazette.

The Defense Ministry confirmed it was the first time a military officer has held the post.

The military enjoys significant popular support in Brazil, but its role in politics is also sensitive in a country where many still remember the 1964-1985 military dictatorship.