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16:46 30 Jul 2021

For the first time in history: Armed Forces now have a female commander

The Minister of Defense of Ukraine Andrii Taran signed an order on appointing the Colonel of the Medical Service, Chief Inspector of the Main Inspectorate of the Ministry of Defense Tetiana Ostashchenko to the position of Commander of the Medical Forces of the Armed Forces of Ukraine.

The press service of the Medical Forces Command of the Armed Forces of Ukraine announced this on Facebook, Rubryka reports.

"For the first time, a woman manages one of the Commands in the Armed Forces of Ukraine. We're gradually moving towards building a new model of Armed Forces. By reforming the army in line with NATO principles and approaches, women now have the opportunity to serve in the military on an equal footing with men. It should be noted that the Supreme Commander-in-Chief, President of Ukraine Volodymyr Zelenskyy, expressed his unconditional support for this choice after a personal meeting," Andrii Taran said.

In his opinion, this appointment of the Commander of the Medical Forces of the Armed Forces of Ukraine is not only about gender equality, but first about professionalism. In a professional army, skill, moral qualities, and patriotism must come first.

"Tetiana Ostashchenko has extensive experience in organizing medical care. She served as Chief Inspector of the Main Inspectorate of the Ministry of Defense of Ukraine, so she understands the front of work that needs to be overcome to restore the normal functioning of military medicine," the Defense Minister said.

He noted that he expected the newly appointed head of the Command to restore order in the medical service, improve the processes of medical care in the army, create favorable conditions for industry development per NATO standards, reduce corruption risks and synchronize the processes of all Medical Forces.

"Most recently, we said that a woman commander, tanker, sniper, scout, pilot, artilleryman is commonplace. In command positions in the Armed Forces, commanders of companies, platoons, and mortar batteries, there are about a hundred women soldiers. Now, the woman has taken the post of Commander-in-Chief and it's quite probable that shortly the first woman Brigadier General will appear in the Armed Forces," Andrii Taran emphasized.

According to him, the statistics eloquently demonstrate how a woman integrated into the Ukrainian army. Today, almost a quarter of the Armed Forces are women, and their role in military development is growing. Equal access to positions and military ranks implies the same level of responsibility in the performance of military service.

What is known about Tatiana Ostashchenko?

Colonel of the Medical Service Tetiana Ostashchenko was born in August 1974 in the city of Lviv in the family of a serviceman. She graduated with honors in 1996 from the Faculty of Pharmacy of the Lviv State Medical Institute, and the Ukrainian Military Medical Academy in 1998.

She served in the military as Chief of Pharmacy of the Military Unit, Officer of the Military Medical Department of the Western Operational Command, Chief of the Medical Supply Department of the Central Military Medical Department of the Armed Forces of Ukraine, Chief of the Military Medical Department of the Ministry of Defense of Ukraine and General Directorate of Military Cooperation and Peacekeeping Staff of the Armed Forces of Ukraine, Chief of the Medical Supply Department of the Main Military Medical Department, Chief Inspector of the Main Inspectorate of the Ministry of Defense of Ukraine.

She received an operational and tactical level of military education in 2020, and also trained in several courses of NATO armies. She has completed courses in defense and security sector reform and strategic leadership for management at Cranfield University (UK).

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