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14 Feb. () –
The Ukrainian Defense Minister, Oleksiy Reznikov, has announced on Tuesday the replacement of his two deputy ministers, Ivan Rusnak and Oleg Haiduk, in the framework of a “restructuring” of the portfolio triggered after the latest accusations of corruption related to the supply of food to the troops in the framework of the invasion of Russia.
Reznikov has indicated that Rusnak and Haiduk “will remain in the ministry team and will be involved in the work as advisers”, before thanking them for “their work in the most difficult days”. “As consultants, they will focus on priority projects that require the full involvement of their experience and expertise,” he said.
“These are not the last steps in the restructuring of the Ministry of Defense. The upcoming changes will strengthen the team and will be presented in the coming days,” he stated through a series of messages on his account on the social network Facebook, in which has added that Oleksander Pavliuk has already been nominated for the post of deputy defense minister.
“General Pavliuk is perfectly aware of modern warfare issues and the needs of our Army and has the necessary leadership and management skills. There will be more synergy in interactions with the Armed Forces General Staff,” he explained.
Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky fired dozens of people — including governors, deputy ministers and his deputy adviser — in January after several scandals within the Defense Ministry and the arrest of a deputy minister for allegedly taking bribes. Likewise, he stressed that “all internal issues that hinder the State are being eliminated and will continue to be eliminated.”
Ukraine has been the scene in the past of numerous cases of corruption and Transparency International placed it in 2021 in 122nd place out of a total of 180 in its study on the perception of corruption. The fight against these crimes is also one of the key demands of the European Union (EU) in the framework of the process for its possible accession to the bloc, something firmly rejected by Russia.