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Former Commander-in-Chief of Ukraine's Armed Forces Valerii Zaluzhnyi at the funeral of a Ukrainian soldier in early March 2023 in Kyiv. (Yurii Stefanyak/Global Images Ukraine via Getty Images)
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Valerii Zaluzhnyi, the former commander-in-chief, has been approved by President Volodymyr Zelensky to be the next Ukrainian ambassador to the U.K., Ukraine's Foreign Ministry announced on March 7.

The Foreign Ministry sent a request to the U.K. in order to finalize the appointment.

Zelensky appointed Oleksandr Syrskyi as the new chief commander on Feb. 8, following months of speculation about a rift in Ukraine's leadership. Zaluzhnyi had led the country's military since July 2021.

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

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

Shortly before officially announcing the dismissal, Zelensky thanked Zaluzhnyi for his service in a Telegram post, adding that the ex-chief commander would remain a "part of the team."

Zelensky grants Hero of Ukraine award to Zaluzhnyi, Budanov
President Volodymyr Zelensky conferred the Hero of Ukraine award, the highest national decoration in Ukraine, to former Commander-in-Chief Valerii Zaluzhnyi, according to a presidential decree from Feb. 8.
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