President Zelensky dismisses the Supreme Commander of the Armed Forces, Valeryi Zalushny. The measure is no surprise.

Valeriy Zalushny, Commander-in-Chief of the Ukrainian Armed Forces, attends a ceremony commemorating the first anniversary of the Ukrainian War.

Power struggle in kyiv: President Zelensky fires his army chief Valery Zalushny Photo: Presidential Press Office of Ukraine/AP/dpa

Kyiv taz | Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky fired Commander-in-Chief of the Armed Forces of Ukraine Valery Zalushny. At the same time, the previous head of the army and Colonel General Oleksandr Syrskyj was appointed new commander-in-chief.

The dismissal of General Zalushniy, who has commanded the Ukrainian troops since 2021 and is very popular among the people, is not really a surprise. Since the end of last year, Ukrainian and international media have repeatedly reported on an alleged rift between the two.

The differences first became public with the publication of an article by Saluschniy in a British newspaper in November. Economist. In it he explained that he did not believe it was realistic to believe in a quick victory. Already then Saluschnyj had spoken out in favor of a tougher approach to the mobilization of the armed forces.

And in the run-up to debates over a new mobilization law, there were differences between the president and the commander-in-chief over mobilization. President Zelensky did not consider the mobilization of 400,000 additional soldiers demanded by Saluschyj to be feasible.

Necessary modernization

On Thursday afternoon, President Zelenskyj reported on Telegram about a meeting with Saluzhnyj. At this meeting he thanked Saluzhny for two years of defending Ukraine. At the same time, there was also talk about the necessary modernization of the Ukrainian armed forces and people who could occupy leadership positions in the Ukrainian army.

“The time for such renewal is now. I offered Valery Fedorovich to stay in the team. We will definitely win! “Glory to Ukraine!” Zelensky wrote on Telegram. He will not find the word “dismissal” in this text.

Salushnyj also wrote on Telegram almost simultaneously, vaguely formulating that the fight continues and that “the tasks of 2022 are different from those of 2024,” so “everyone has to change and adapt to new realities.”

In conversations with the president it was decided that it was “necessary to change focus and strategy,” Saluschnyj said. But soon after the exchange of pleasantries came to an end. President Zelensky announced that he had appointed Oleksandr Syrskyj as the new commander-in-chief.

Hero of Ukraine

Syrsky had already commanded Ukrainian troops in the “anti-terrorist operation” in the east of the country since 2014. For the successful defense of Kiev, he was awarded the Order of Bohdan Khmelnytskyi, 2nd class, and on April 5, 2022 he was awarded the title of Hero of Ukraine.

In September 2022, Oleksandr Syrskyi led the counteroffensive of the Ukrainian armed forces in the Kharkiv region. Ukrainian soldiers recaptured the cities of Balakliya, Kupiansk and Izium.

Now many people are asking the question. What plans does Valeryi Zalushnyj, who is very popular in the country, have? He has not yet responded to Selenski's offer to continue working on the team. Meanwhile, the Russian Defense Ministry reports another prisoner exchange of one hundred prisoners of war. Ukraine has not confirmed this information.