President of Ukraine Volodymyr Zelenskyy introduced new Minister of Defense Andriy Taran to the staff of the Ministry.
During a meeting, the Head of State stressed that the priority of the new minister should be to ensure high defense capability of the country.
"Strengthening our Armed Forces requires a joint, coordinated work of the Ministry and the Head of the Armed Forces of Ukraine in all important areas," Volodymyr Zelenskyy said.
The President noted that people are the basis of any army, hence all strategies of the defense institution should be focused primarily on the person.
“We are talking about decent provision of our military with modern and effective weapons, increase in the level of training, enhancing social protection of people in uniform. Our servicemen give their homeland energy, health, life, and therefore they must have a powerful motivational package,” the Head of State emphasized.
The President stressed the importance of the army's attitude to the Minister of Defense.
"We understand that, according to NATO standards, the Minister of Defense must be a civilian, but we have a war going on. And it is very important for me that the army respects the Minister of Defense,” Volodymyr Zelenskyy said.
Newly appointed Minister of Defense of Ukraine Andriy Taran thanked the Supreme Commander-in-Chief for his trust and assured that he would do his best to fulfill the difficult tasks facing the Ministry.
According to him, the main priority is to ensure high defense capability of the country.
“The Armed Forces need technological modernization, transition to modern weapon systems using the latest technologies. We need a well-considered weaponry development program, not haphazard procurement for patching old holes,” he said.
At the same time, Andriy Taran noted that people are the basis of the army. Therefore, it is necessary for all military personnel to become truly professional. This requires the hard work of the Ministry and the military leadership of the Armed Forces.
The Minister also stressed the need to continue social protection policy of the military and their families. In particular, it is necessary to develop and implement a broad motivational package. It should include housing, decent wages, priority for admission to educational institutions, free education, provision of high-quality medical services, and guarantees after dismissal.
"All this, I believe, will enhance the prestige of service in the Armed Forces. Make it attractive, promising, finally resolve the issues of manning and raise the level of military capability,” the Minister said.
In addition, Andriy Taran stressed the need to continue to implement NATO standards in the Armed Forces of Ukraine. First and foremost, it is about maximizing the ability of the Armed Forces to interact with NATO forces.