Ukraine replaces special forces commander, removed officer wonders why

source :

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskiy attends a press conference in Odesa, Ukraine on October 13, 2023. REUTERS/Nina Liashonok/File Photo Acquire Licensing Rights

Nov 3 (Reuters) – Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky on Friday named a new commander of his special forces, a unit known for carrying out military operations in Moscow-held areas, but the officer replaced in the shuffle said that he had not been told why.

Zelenskiy said in his nightly video address that Colonel Serhiy Lupanchuk would now lead the armed forces, describing him as “an experienced officer, combat officer and the right man in command”.

The president said that Lupanchuk’s predecessor, Maj. Gen. Viktor Horenko, who led the armed forces from July 2022, “will continue to perform special tasks” within the Defense Ministry’s Intelligence Directorate.

Zelenskiy provided no further explanation for the change.

Horenko said in an interview that he had not been told anything.

“Personally, I don’t know the reasons. Let me say that I learned about this through the media,” Horenko told the Ukrainska Pravda news site.

“I spoke to the commander-in-chief (General Valery Zaluzhnyi), who could not explain it either. The Commander-in-Chief was supposed to make the proper statement, but he told him he had not. don’t understand what happened.”

The special forces are believed to be behind the most advanced operations carried out by the Ukrainian military in areas under Russian control, especially Crimea, which was annexed by Moscow in 2014, eight years before Moscow’s full-scale land invasion.

Recent examples include an attack in September on the headquarters of Russia’s Black Sea Fleet in Sevastopol, and attacks on a patrol ship and a submarine based on the peninsula.

The special forces are also responsible for military information and psychological operations, as well as for the organization of the resistance in the occupied territories.

Zelenskiy this week praised the Ukrainian military for reducing Moscow’s military strength in the Black Sea through increased air and sea drone attacks on Russian military targets.

The president rejects Western criticism that Ukraine’s counteroffensive launched in June is moving too slowly.

Commander-in-chief Zaluzhniy said in an essay published this week in The Economist magazine that the war had entered a static, exhausting phase, which was to Moscow’s advantage.

Reporting by Ron Popeski and Oleksandr Kozhukhar; Editing by Rod Nikkel

Our Standards: Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.

Obtain licensing rightsopens a new tab

source :

Related Articles

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Back to top button