The Cabinet of Ministers approved the appointment of Ivan Fedorov, the exiled mayor of the Russian-occupied city of Melitopol, as governor of Zaporizhzhia Oblast, Taras Melnychuk, the government's representative in parliament, said on Jan. 23.
The government also approved the dismissal of Yuriy Malashko, the regional governor since February 2023. The reasons for the reshuffle are unknown.
Both decrees are now awaiting President Volodymyr Zelensky's signature.
Ivan Fedorov became the mayor of Melitopol, a city with a pre-war population of about 150,000 people, after winning the local elections in the fall of 2020. After the beginning of the all-out war, he was abducted by the Russian troops on March 11, 2022. According to the reports, Fedorov refused to cooperate with them and later was tortured, Zelensky said at that time.
Five days later, he was released following a "special operation" conducted by Ukraine. He was awarded the Order for Courage third class soon after.