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Zaluzhnyi resigns: Zelenskyy appoints Colonel General Syrsky as new Commander-in-Chief of the Armed Forces

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Zaluzhnyi resigns: Zelenskyy appoints Colonel General Syrsky as new Commander-in-Chief of the Armed Forces

The dismissal of Valeriy Zaluzhnyi and the appointment of Colonel General Syrskyi as Commander-in-Chief of the Armed Forces of Ukraine mark a transition to a new stage in the management of the country's military affairs. This decision may reflect strategic transformations in the army's policy and directions of development. Read more about the appointment of the new leader and what Zaluzhnyi was remembered for as Commander-in-Chief of the Armed Forces of Ukraine

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Valeriy Zaluzhnyi has been dismissed from the post of Commander-in-Chief of the Armed Forces of Ukraine. This was announced by President of Ukraine Volodymyr Zelenskyy in his Telegram.


"I am grateful to General Zaluzhnyi for two years of defense. I am grateful for every victory we have achieved together and thanks to all the Ukrainian soldiers who are heroically enduring this war. Today we had a frank discussion about what needs to be changed in the army. Urgent changes. I offered General Zaluzhnyi to continue to be part of the Ukrainian state team. I would be grateful for his consent. Starting today, a new management team will take over the leadership of the Armed Forces of Ukraine," the head of state wrote.


Later, the President announced that Colonel General Oleksandr Syrskyi became the new Commander-in-Chief of the Armed Forces of Ukraine.


"I have appointed Colonel General Syrsky as Commander-in-Chief of the Armed Forces of Ukraine," Zelenskyy said in his evening video address.


The Head of State emphasized that 2024 could be successful for Ukraine only if there are effective changes in the basis of our defense, which is the Armed Forces.


Was Zaluzhny's dismissal expected?


Rumors about Zaluzhny's resignation began to spread after the results of the Ukrainian counteroffensive in the summer. However, the President's Office denied that there was a conflict between the head of state and the commander-in-chief of the Armed Forces. 


In addition, in November last year, Ukrainian Defense Minister Rustem Umerov categorically denied the possibility of Zaluzhny's dismissal, calling it an information throw-in. And in early December 2023, Mykhailo Podoliak, an adviser to the head of the Presidential Office, said that there were no grounds for Zaluzhny's dismissal.

Whether there was a conflict in the government and what the West says about the dismissal of the Commander-in-Chief - read in our article.


Some interesting facts about Zaluzhnyi


Valeriy Fedorovych Zaluzhnyi began his career as a platoon and company commander, and then rose to the position of battalion commander. From 2007 to 2009, he served as Chief of Staff and First Deputy Commander of the 24th Separate Mechanized Brigade of the 13th Army Corps of the Land Forces of the Armed Forces of Ukraine in Lviv Oblast. From 2009 to 2012, he headed the 51st Separate Mechanized Brigade.


In 2014, Valeriy Zaluzhnyi was appointed deputy commander of Sector C in the anti-terrorist operation zone in Donetsk region. During the battles near Debaltseve, he led a battalion.


In 2017, Zaluzhnyi was promoted to the rank of major general, but continued his service on the front line. He also served as the First Deputy Commander of the Joint Forces - Chief of Staff of the Joint Forces Operation in 2018-2019. 


Since July 2021, he has served as the Commander-in-Chief of the Armed Forces of Ukraine, and in 2022 was promoted to the rank of general by presidential decree.




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What is Zaluzhnyi remembered for?


The appointment of Valeriy Zaluzhnyi was an important part of a large-scale reform in the Ukrainian army after significant changes in the Ministry of Defense and during the restructuring of the military command.


Zaluzhnyi, along with other Ukrainian commanders, had been feeling the threat of a full-scale invasion from their neighbors since 2014. Therefore, they used this time to establish cooperation with NATO and develop a new flexible model of warfare in which small units could act autonomously without waiting for orders from above.


According to military analysts, this helped to paralyze the occupiers' formations at the outbreak of a full-scale war and force senior russian military officers to join the battle, where some of them ended up in the Ukrainian swamps.


He has repeatedly emphasized his desire to reform the Ukrainian Armed Forces in accordance with NATO standards.


In particular, when putin was counting on Ukraine's quick surrender, Zaluzhnyi developed a strategy that allowed our country to withstand a strong blow from the aggressor.


The American edition of Politico called Zaluzhnyi an "iron general", recognizing his high efficiency and dedication to military affairs.

The new Commander-in-Chief of the Armed Forces of Ukraine: what is known about Oleksandr Syrskyi


Colonel General Oleksandr Syrskyi is recognized as the face of the Ukrainian counteroffensive. He led the defense of Kyiv and offensive operations in the Kharkiv region, heading the largest branch of the Armed Forces - the Land Forces.


Since the beginning of 2014, Syrskyi has been actively opposing the russian invaders. He headed the ATO headquarters and was promoted to lieutenant general.


For the successful defense of Kyiv, he was awarded the Order of Bohdan Khmelnytsky, II degree, and on April 5, 2022, he became a Hero of Ukraine.


In September 2022, Oleksandr Syrskyi led the counteroffensive of the Armed Forces of Ukraine in the Kharkiv region. Under his leadership, our troops liberated Balakliia, Kupiansk and Izium. The Ministry of Defense of Ukraine named him among the creators of the Armed Forces' victories - "the Atlanteans who held the operation on their shoulders."


Zelenskyy called him the most experienced Ukrainian commander.


"He has successful experience in defense - he conducted the Kyiv defense operation. He also has successful experience of offensive - the Kharkiv liberation operation," the head of state emphasized.

We remind you! Earlier, we wrote that the updated draft law on mobilization to Ukraine states that summonses to the military and civilian authorities will be sent online. Find out more about how this mechanism will work and why there are already many questions about it.


Photo: AP

Want to know more? Read the latest news and useful materials about Ukraine and the world in the News section.




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