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Zelenskyy appoints Deputy Commander-in-Chief and Chief of General Staff of Ukraine’s Armed Forces


Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy has appointed deputies to Commander-in-Chief Oleksandr Syrskyi and a Chief of the General Staff of the Armed Forces of Ukraine.

Source: President Zelenskyy’s video address

Quote from Zelenskyy: “Throughout the day today I held meetings with military commanders and the government. We continue to overhaul the leadership of the defence forces. People who are well-known in the army and who know well what the army needs are assuming their duties. They served as military commanders in this war, and their experience will be useful at the level of the entire army.

Colonel Vadym Sukharevskyi has been appointed deputy to Commander-in-Chief Oleksandr Syrskyi. He focuses on unmanned systems and expanding and improving our soldiers’ use of drones. Colonel Andrii Lebedenko has been also appointed Deputy Commander-in-Chief. He focuses on innovations, the technological aspect of the army and combat systems. We need people with experience of working with new technologies.

I have appointed Brigadier General Volodymyr Horbatiuk, Brigadier General Oleksii Shevchenko and Brigadier General Mykhail Drapatyi. Horbatiuk focuses on operational work, the work of headquarters, planning, and management: each headquarters has to completely understand the situation on the front. Shevchenko’s focus is on logistics, the best possible logistics for our army. Drapatyi will be responsible for high-quality training for our soldiers.”

Details: Zelenskyy added that “combat commanders’, combat brigades’, our units’ real combat experience and experience in building a top quality training for soldiers and assessing and analysing combat has to be used to ensure the success of Ukraine’s Defence Forces”.


  • On 8 February, President Volodymyr Zelenskyy appointed Colonel General Oleksandr Syrskyi as Commander-in-Chief of the Armed Forces of Ukraine, replacing Valerii Zaluzhnyi.

  • On 9 February, Zelenskyy appointed Major General Anatolii Barhylevych as the Chief of the General Staff of Ukraine, as recommended by Commander-in-Chief Oleksandr Syrskyi. He also said that Syrskyi had chosen his deputies and that Zelenskyy would sign the corresponding decrees on their appointments. The Deputy Chiefs of the General Staff have also been chosen.

  • On 10 February, the Cabinet of Ministers dismissed Oleksandr Pavliuk, First Deputy Minister of Defence, as he was leaving for another position. The media believe that he will become the head of the Ground Forces instead of Commander-in-Chief Oleksandr Syrskyi.

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