Mykhailo Yezhel

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Mykhailo Bronislavovych Yezhel
Mykhailo Yezhel.jpg
Admiral Mykhailo Yezhel
Native name
Михайло Броніславович Єжель
Born (1952-10-19) October 19, 1952 (age 67)
Bar Raion, Ukrainian SSR
Years of serviceJuly 1970 – October 2003

Admiral (Ret.) Mykhailo Bronislavovych Yezhel (Ukrainian: Михайло Броніславович Єжель) is the former Minister of Defence of Ukraine (from 2010 to 2012) and a former Commander of the Ukrainian Navy (from 2001 to 2003).


Mykhailo Yezhel was born on October 19, 1952 in a small village of Sloboda-Yaltushkivska, Bar Raion, Vinnytsia Oblast, in the Ukrainian SSR of the Soviet Union.

In 1970 he completed 10th grade in a Republican specialized boarding school in Kiev and went on military career. Having served in the Pacific Fleet of the Soviet Navy from 1975 till 1993, Yezhel acquired citizenship of the newly independent Ukraine and joined its Navy from the very beginning of its foundation.[citation needed]

From August 20, 2001 until April 25, 2003 he served as commander-in-chief of the Ukrainian Navy. He retired in October 2003.[1]

From March 11, 2010[2] until February 8, 2012 he served as the Minister of Defence of Ukraine.[3] According to Ukrayinska Pravda he had been forced to resign "for failure to plan for army reform".[4] On 24 February 2012 Yezhel was appointed an adviser to Ukrainian President Viktor Yanukovych.[5]

From 2013 until 2015 Yezhel was Ambassador of Ukraine to Belarus.[6]

In March 2016 Mykhailo Yezhel together with (his successor as Minister of Defence) Pavlo Lebedyev were placed on a wanted list by Ukrainian authorities on suspicion of criminal activities and desertion. Yezhel was specifically wanted in relation to the sale of two Tu-95MS bombers to Russia during his period as defense minister.[7] In April 2015 Belarus refused to respond to the Ukrainian request as to whether Yezhel lived in Minsk.[6] Yezhel than confirmed that he and his family did live in Belarus, and that he will only return to Ukraine after a withdraw of the criminal charges.[6] He was granted refugee status in Belarus in July 2018.[8]


  1. ^ Yanukovych replaces defense minister, Kyiv Post (8 February 2012)
  2. ^ VR of Ukraine appointed Yezhel Defense Minister of Ukraine, UNIAN (March 11, 2010)
  3. ^ Ukraine gets new defence minister, Kyiv Post (8 February 2012)
  4. ^ (in Ukrainian) ЯНУКОВИЧ ЗМІНИВ ЄЖЕЛЯ НА САЛАМАТІНА, Ukrayinska Pravda (8 February 2012)
  5. ^ Former Defense Minister Yezhel appointed presidential adviser, Kyiv Post (24 February 2012)
  6. ^ a b c (in Ukrainian) The court allowed the investigation into the distance Yezhel, Ukrayinska Pravda (22 August 2016)
  7. ^ "Two former Ukrainian defense ministers announced wanted – chief military prosecutor", Interfax-Ukraine, 14 March 2016
  8. ^ Belarus grants refugee status to ex-defense minister of Ukraine

External links[edit]

Military offices
Preceded by
Volodymyr Bezkorovainy
Naval Commander of Ukraine
Succeeded by
Ihor Knyaz