WASHINGTON - The Defense Department should take over security for US nuclear weapons sites after a nuclear complex was broken into with ease in July by an 82-year-old nun and two other peace activists, a top lawmaker in the US House of Representatives said on Friday.

Mike Turner, the Republican chairman of the House Armed Services panel that oversees the Energy Department's nuclear weapons complex, has drafted legislation to put the US military in charge of protecting facilities like the Y-12 complex in Oak Ridge, Tennessee.

"The fact that this vulnerability is so widely known has got to be addressed," Turner said in an interview.

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