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Russia names new air force leader replacing rebellion-tied general, state news reports

MOSCOW (AP) — State news agencies are reporting that Russia has named a full replacement for the former head of the country’s Aerospace Forces. The former chief was dismissed after this summer’s brief rebellion against the military establishment. The Tass and RIA-Novosti agencies both cited a source as saying Col. Gen. Viktor Afzalov — who reportedly had been acting head of the air force since mid-August — was given the full post. He replaces Gen. Sergei Surovikin. There was no official confirmation of the report, but state agencies frequently represent official positions through reports citing anonymous officials in Russia’s defense and security establishment. Surovikin was believed to have had close ties with Yevgeny Prigozhin, head of the Wagner mercenary group, who mounted the rebellion.

Article Topic Follows: AP-National

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