Zelensky dismisses Zaluzhnyi from military service

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President Volodymyr Zelensky has dismissed Valerii Zaluzhnyi, the former commander-in-chief of Ukraine’s Armed Forces, according to a presidential decree published online on May 9.

The decree stated that Zaluzhnyi was dismissed "from military service on health grounds" and retained "the right to wear a military uniform." The decree is dated May 8.

Zaluzhnyi will reportedly start his new role as Ukraine's ambassador to the U.K. in the coming weeks, after being replaced by Oleksandr Syrskyi as commander-in-chief in February.

Zaluzhnyi's dismissal followed multiple stories by Ukrainian and foreign media outlets, citing anonymous sources in the government, that Zelensky was set to fire the chief commander.

The decision sparked public debate, as Zaluzhnyi is widely popular with both the military and the population due to his role in leading the resistance against Russia.

Zaluzhnyi has served in Ukraine's Armed Forces since 1993, when he began his training at a military academy in Odesa.

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