Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu announced on Monday that he was appointing Likud Knesset member David Amsalem as communications minister.

Amsalem, who serves as the coalition chairman, will replace Ayoub Kara, who resigned his post last week a day after withdrawing his candidacy for the post of the Israeli ambassador to Egypt.

He has since implied in media interviews that he was pressured to do so by senior Likud officials, whom he accused of “waging a systematic smear campaign against me, aimed at undermining my position in the party and seeing me removed from the centers of power in the [Likud] movement.”

In a short statement issued on Monday, Amsalem thanked Netanyahu for the appointment, saying that it was a “great privilege.”

This article first appeared in Israel Hayom.