Zelensky appoints deputies for new army Commander in Chief Syrskyi

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky holds a joint press conference with Polish Prime Minister Donald Tusk (not pictured) at the Mariinskyi Palace. -/Ukraine Presidency/dpa
Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky holds a joint press conference with Polish Prime Minister Donald Tusk (not pictured) at the Mariinskyi Palace. -/Ukraine Presidency/dpa
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Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky appointed two new deputies for the army's new commander-in-chief, bypassing several senior generals, to focus more on drones and electronic warfare in an ongoing shakeup of the defence leadership.

"The deputies to Commander-in-Chief [Oleksandr] Syrskyi will be Colonel Vadim Sukharevskyi - his area is autonomous systems and the development of the use of drones for our soldiers - and Colonel Andriy Lebedenko - his area is innovations and the technological component of the army and combat systems," Zelensky said in his daily video address on Saturday.

The move sees two officers of lower rank promoted above several generals who will now be their subordinates.

Zelensky justified the appointments with the need to develop new technologies in the military, in order to minimize losses at the front.

He announced a large-scale reorganization at the top of the army after replacing its commander-in-chief earlier in the week.

In a further move on Saturday, he replaced three deputy chiefs of staff, though appointing three experienced brigadier generals.
this time, Volodymyr Horbatyuk, Olexiy Shevchenko and Mykhailo Drapato.

Zelensky also addressed Ukraine's own production of weapons and ammunition, saying he had given the necessary instructions at meetings.

Kiev is struggling with a growing shortage of ammunition and needs more support from the West for weapons. Zelensky also said working with foreign partners is important to the country and that he had asked French President Emmanuel Macron for electronic warfare, air defence and artillery weapons in a call.