President of Ukraine Volodymyr Zelensky is considering not only the dismissal of the Commander-in-Chief of the Armed Forces of Ukraine (AFU), Valery Zaluzhny, but also Serhiy Shaptala, the AFU’s Chief of the General Staff, as reported by Ukrainska Pravda, citing sources in government and military circles.

According to the outlet, the Presidential Office is already discussing replacing Shaptala.

“Shaptala will leave the General Staff. All the others are uncertain,” an anonymous source told UP, adding that possible dismissals in Ukraine’s top military leadership are expected in a few days.

Despite the wave of reports on potential dismissals, this morning Valeriy Zaluzhny posted a photo on his Facebook account with Serhiy Shaptala, accompanied by an enigmatic message stating that “we [likely referring to himself and Shaptala] will definitely never be ashamed.”


“It will still be very difficult for us, but we will definitely never be ashamed. I am happy that in this life and during the war, you were close to me, a person for whom Ukraine is truly above all else,” Ukraine’s military chief wrote.

“Happy birthday, friend! We believe in the best. We already deserve it,” he added.

The rumors about Shaptala’s potential dismissal following Zaluzhny’s possible resignation appeared in the backdrop of Zelensky’s recent interview with the Italian media outlet Rai1, where he mentioned contemplating resetting Ukraine’s military leadership, emphasizing the importance of a “fresh beginning" for the country.

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“This is a question about the people who will lead Ukraine. Of course, we need a reset, a new beginning,” Zelensky said, addressing rumors about Zaluzhny’s potential dismissal.

He went on to explain that the consideration extends beyond the military sector, indicating a broader overhaul of senior officials in various areas of the government.


“When we talk about this, I mean the replacement of a number of senior officials of the state, not only in a separate sector, such as the military. I am thinking about this replacement [of Zaluzhny], but we cannot say that we have replaced one person,” Zelensky said.

On Jan. 29, following a meeting with Zelensky, anonymous Telegram channels, believed to have ties to the President’s Office and Ukrainian lawmakers, began reporting that Zaluzhny’s dismissal was imminent.

No one knows for certain what occurred at the meeting, as the Ministry of Defense quickly dispelled the rumor with a simple message:

“Dear journalists, we immediately answer everyone: No, this is not true,” read the ministry’s Telegram announcement at 7:41 p.m.

Zelensky himself has not commented on the matter, neither in his nightly addresses to Ukrainians nor on any of his social networks.

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