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Ukraine defence minister being replaced: presidential ally


Ukrainian Defence Minister Oleksii Reznikov gestures as he addresses a press conference with French Defence Minister Sebastien Lecornu, as part of Reznikov’s official visit, at the Hotel de Brienne, the French Ministry of Armed Forces, in Paris on January 31, 2023. JULIE SEBADELHA/Pool via REUTERS

Ukrainian Defence Minister Oleksii Reznikov, under pressure from a corruption scandal at his ministry, is set to be transferred to another government job, the head of President Volodymyr Zelenskiy’s parliamentary bloc said on Sunday.

David Arakhamia, chief of the Servant of the People bloc, said the defence ministry would be headed up by Kyrylo Budanov, head of the GUR military intelligence agency.

He did not say when the move would be formalised. There was no immediate comment from Reznikov.

“War dictates changes in personnel policy,” Arakhamia said on the Telegram messaging app.

“Times and circumstances require strengthening and regrouping. This is what is happening now and will happen in the future…The enemy is getting ready for an offensive. We are getting ready to defend ourselves and return what is ours.”