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The worst kept secret in Kyiv has finally been confirmed: the man who led Ukraine’s armed forces for two years is out of his job.

President Volodymyr Zelensky replaced General Valerii Zaluzhnyi on Thursday, after 10 days of rumor and speculation – and months of a fraying relationship.

The announcement comes at a critical moment in the war with Russia and is likely to herald a change in Ukrainian strategy. But it is also hazardous.

The removal of Zaluzhnyi from his position as commander-in-chief comes as Ukrainian units are on the backfoot in several parts of the long front line, especially in the eastern Donetsk and Kharkiv regions. They are desperately short of shells and other munitions and running short of experienced soldiers.

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