Vitaly Fedorchuk

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Vitaly Fedorchuk
Виталий Федорчук
Vitaly Fedorchuk.jpg
Minister of Interior Affairs of the Soviet Union
In office
17 December 1982 – 25 January 1986
Preceded byNikolai Shchelokov
Succeeded byAlexander Vlasov
5th Chairman of the Committee for State Security
In office
26 May 1982 – 17 December 1982
PremierNikolai Tikhonov
Preceded byYuri Andropov
Succeeded byViktor Chebrikov
Personal details
Vitaly Vasilyevich Fedorchuk

(1918-12-27)27 December 1918
Ogievka, Kiev Governorate, Ukrainian People's Republic
Died29 February 2008(2008-02-29) (aged 89)
Moscow, Russian Federation
Resting placeTroyekurovskoye cemetery, Moscow
Political partyCommunist Party of the Soviet Union (1936-1986)

Vitaly Vasilyevich Fedorchuk (Russian: Виталий Васильевич Федорчук; 27 December 1918 – 29 February 2008) was a Ukrainian Soviet security and intelligence officer and politician.

Early life and education[edit]

Born in 1918 to a poor Ukrainian peasant family in the village of Ogievka, located in the Zhitomir region of Ukraine,[1] Fedorchuk started working at a local newspaper at the age of 16.[2] He was called up for military service in 1936 and graduated from the Military Signals and Communications School in Kiev.[1] Initially a signals officer in the Red Army, in 1939 he was recruited by the NKVD as a full-time operative.

Security and intelligence officer[edit]

At the beginning of his career as a state security officer, Fedorchuk was assigned to the People's Republic of Mongolia, where he fought in the victorious Battle of Khalkhin Gol against the Japanese. He then served as special assistant to the operational commissar of the Special Department of the NKVD of the Urals Military District. After the start of the Great Patriotic War, he became deputy chief of the Special Department of the NKVD attached to the 82nd Motorized Rifle Division of the Red Army and then, from 1942 to 1943, he was chief of the Special Department of the NKVD attached to the Armor Brigades on the North Caucasus Front. Between 1943 and 1949 he served as deputy chief of military counterintelligence (SMERSH) in Yaroslavl.

In 1949 he was assigned as a military counterintelligence officer on the Central Group of Forces in Soviet-occupied Austria. Then he worked in East Germany and again in Austria (since 1955 free from military occupation), in the Soviet Embassy in Vienna, until 1967, under diplomatic cover.[1] In 1967, he was appointed Director of the Third Directorate (military counterintelligence) of the KGB where he served until 1970.[1]

For a period of 12 years, between 18 July 1970 and 26 May 1982, Fedorchuk served as Chairman of the Ukrainian KGB. In this capacity, he led a fierce suppression of Ukrainian nationalism. He was appointed Chairman of the KGB on 26 May 1982, replacing Yuri Andropov, and served for seven months until 17 December 1982.[3]

He then became the Soviet Interior Minister in December 1982, replacing Brezhnev's man Nikolai Shchelokov.[4][5] His term ended in January 1986 (Mikhail Gorbachev had him replaced due to his opposition to the policies of the new Soviet leadership) and he was succeeded by Alexander V. Vlasov.[6] After leaving the Interior Ministry, Fedorchuk became an Inspector at the Ministry of Defense, a largely honorary post,[7] and then, he retired.[2]

Death and burial[edit]

Fedorchuk died in Moscow on 29 February 2008 at the age of 89.[4][8] His body was buried at Moscow's Troyekurovskoye cemetery.[3]


  1. ^ a b c d "Vitaly Fedorchuk: Short-lived head of the KGB". The Independent. 18 March 2008. Retrieved 31 March 2013.
  2. ^ a b Martin, Douglas (9 March 2008). "Vitaly Fedorchuk, 89, of K.G.B. Dies". The New York Times. p. 30.
  3. ^ a b "Ex-KGB head Vitaly Fedorchuk dead at 89". UPI. 3 March 2008. Retrieved 31 March 2013.
  4. ^ a b "Former KGB chief dies at 89". USA Today. Moscow. AP. 3 March 2008. Retrieved 31 March 2013.
  5. ^ Starov, Vadim. "MDV. The Ministry of Internal Affairs". Systema Spetnaz. Retrieved 31 March 2013.
  6. ^ Eaton, William J. (26 January 1986). "Soviet Interior Minister Shifted to Other Duties". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 7 July 2013.
  7. ^ "Vitaly Fedorchuk: 89". The Globe and Mail. 5 March 2008. Retrieved 31 March 2013.
  8. ^ "Obituaries in the News". The Washington Post. Moscow. AP. 3 March 2008. Retrieved 13 April 2013.
Government offices
Preceded by
Vitaliy Nikitchenko
Director of the Committee for State Security
Succeeded by
Stepan Mukha
Preceded by
Yuri Andropov
Chairman of State Committee for State Security
Succeeded by
Viktor Chebrikov