Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu has appointed General Valeriy Gerasimov – former head of Russian army General Staff – as commander of the Russian troop grouping in Ukraine. According to a Telegram post by the Defense Ministry, the former commander, General Sergey Surovikin, will now serve as Gerasimov’s deputy.
Colonel General Oleg Salyukov, Commander-in-Chief of Russia’s Ground Forces, and Colonel General Aleksei Kim, Deputy Chief of the General Staff, were also appointed as Gerasimov’s deputies.
The Defense Ministry commented that “the increase of the level of leadership of the Special Military Operation is linked to the expansion of the scale of tasks to be accomplished in the course of the operation,” as well as the need for closer interaction between troop branches and the improvement in “leadership efficiency”.
Surovikin had been in charge of Russia's troop grouping in Ukraine since October 8.