Zelensky to Appoint Zaluzhny as Ukraine’s New Ambassador to the UK

The appointment is seen as a move to keep Zaluzhny from domestic politics

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky will appoint Gen. Valery Zaluzhny, Ukraine’s former commander-in-chief, as his ambassador to the UK.

Zelensky removed Zaluzhny from his post as a top general on February 8, and the two have been at odds over the disastrous war with Russia for years. Zaluzhny has long been rumored to be a potential candidate once Ukraine has presidential elections again, and Zelensky’s move to send him to the UK is seen as an effort to keep him from domestic politics.

Ukraine’s Foreign Ministry said that Zelensky “approved the candidacy of Valery Zaluzhny for the post of Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary Ambassador of Ukraine to the United Kingdom.” Zelensky said in a statement that Zaluzhny “told me that this is the direction he would like to take — diplomacy.”

Then news came after a poll in Ukraine found Zelensky would lose to Zaluzhny in a presidential election. The poll found that 41% favored Zaluzhny in a first-round election, while only 23.7% would vote for Zelensky.

Ukraine was due to hold presidential elections on March 31, but they have been delayed as Zelensky continues to extend martial law. Under Ukraine’s constitution, a vote can’t be held in Ukraine under martial law, but Zelensky previously said it was possible if Western countries paid enough money.

While the Biden administration has sold the proxy war in Ukraine as a fight for “democracy,” the US has not pushed Zelensky to hold elections. Parliamentary elections that were scheduled for last fall have also been delayed.

Author: Dave DeCamp

Dave DeCamp is the news editor of Antiwar.com, follow him on Twitter @decampdave.