President Zelenskyy appoints Oleksandr Trepak to lead Special Operations Forces

Zelenskyy changed the commander of the Special Operations Forces
Zelenskyy changed the commander of the Special Operations Forces

President Volodymyr Zelenskyy has dismissed Serhiy Lupanchuk from the post of commander of the Special Operations Forces and appointed Oleksandr Trepak to the position, according to presidential decrees No. 313/2024 and No. 314/2024 dated May 9.

Lupanchuk had held this position since Nov. 3, 2023. Prior to him, Viktor Khorenko was the commander of the Special Operations Forces.

Background of the new commander of the Special Operations Forces

Oleksandr Trepak was born on Sept. 15, 1976, in a military family. During his officer service, he held various positions in the intelligence units of the Armed Forces of Ukraine and served in several types of intelligence: military, radio intelligence and information.

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Since April 2014, Trepak has been participating in the anti-terrorist operation in eastern Ukraine. Together with the Special Forces units of the Military Law Enforcement Service, the Kirovohrad-based unit guarded the Armored Armament Supply Center in Bakhmut and the small arms storage base in the village of Paraskoviyivka, Donetsk Oblast.

In June 2014, Trepak led a subgroup of eight soldiers to seize a Russian proxy checkpoint at the entrance to Bakhmut and held it for three hours to ensure the evacuation of the seriously wounded commander of the Armor Supply Center, Colonel Volodymyr Chobitko. During the battle, he was shot in the leg.

For the successful completion of this mission, Oleksandr Trepak was promoted to the rank of colonel and awarded the Order of Bohdan Khmelnytskyi, III class.

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After treatment, from Aug. 27 to Oct. 3, 2014, he was the senior military commander for the defense of the territory of Donetsk International Airport. He led the repulsion of all attempts to storm and seize the airport.

He was awarded the title of Hero of Ukraine and the Order of the Golden Star in 2015.

On March 23, 2016, he was appointed commander of the Kirovohrad-based 3rd Special Forces Regiment. In June 2017, he received a master's degree from the Ivan Cherniakhovskyi National Defense University of Ukraine.

At the end of 2020, Trepak was appointed Chief of Staff – Deputy Commander of the Special Operations Forces of the Armed Forces of Ukraine.

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