On February 8, a change in leadership took place in the Armed Forces of Ukraine. The Ukrainian World Congress sincerely thanks General Valerii Zaluzhnyi for his dedicated service to Ukraine as the Commander-in-Chief of the Armed Forces of Ukraine during the most challenging times since the start of the full-scale Russian invasion.
“General Valerii Zaluzhnyi – A skilled military leader who stopped and pushed back the “world’s second most powerful military” – since the beginning of Russia’s genocidal full-scale invasion of Ukraine. As Commander-in-Chief, his charism, humility, and empathy towards his troops made him a trusted leader and a hero of Ukraine. He saved Ukraine and countless military and civilian lives,” wrote UWC President Paul Grod.
UWC President added that Zaluzhnyi’s devotion, leadership, and bravery inspired the world, and the general will forever stand as an icon of Ukraine’s inspirational fight for freedom and independence.
“The Ukrainian World Congress expresses gratitude for our close collaboration as part of the Unite with Ukraine initiative. We look forward to continuing our working relationship during the next phase of your service to Ukraine,” Grod said.
General Oleksandr Syrskyi, who commanded the Ground Forces of the Armed Forces of Ukraine, has taken the position of Zaluzhnyi. The military officer graduated from the Moscow Higher Military Command School and began his career as a commander of a motorized rifle platoon in the Soviet army.
After the dissolution of the USSR, Syrskyi continued his service in the Ukrainian army, rising to the rank of Lieutenant General. He graduated with a gold medal with honors from the National Defense University of Ukraine and later from the National Academy of Defense of Ukraine. Before the Russian hostilities in Donbas, Syrskyi headed Ukraine’s cooperation with NATO, participating in discussions on aligning the Ukrainian military with Alliance standards.
General Syrskyi participated in the Anti-Terrorist Operation (ATO), and from the early days of Russia’s full-scale war against Ukraine, he commanded the defense of Kyiv. He was awarded the Order of Bohdan Khmelnytskyi and received the title Hero of Ukraine. He is married with two sons.