Top Ukrainian Chief’s Aide Killed By Surprise Birthday Gift

( – Over the last month, the media has largely focused on the war in Israel. While that conflict rages in the Middle East, the Russian war on Ukraine is nearing two years in Eastern Europe. Recently, an aide to a top Ukrainian military chief died after opening a birthday gift.

On November 6, General Valery Zaluzhny announced that his assistant, Major Hennadii Chastiakov died. The Washington Post reported that Zaluzhny blamed his aide’s death on “tragic circumstances” that occurred while he was celebrating his birthday.

According to Interior Minister Ihor Klymenko, Chastiakov’s 13-year-old son started to turn the ring on the grenade. The major snatched the weapon from him and pulled the ring unintentionally, causing the explosion. The minister called the incident a “tragic accident.” Police officers called the incident the “result of careless handling of ammunition.”

Reports indicated the grenade that killed the major wasn’t the only one in the flat, there were a total of five there. Klymenko told the press that the grenades were a gift from a colleague in the Ukrainian army. The colleague reportedly said it was hard to surprise Zaluzhny’s aide, so he was giving the major “combat grenades and a bottle of good whisky.” Two more were found as well and photos of the scene allegedly showed others on his floor.

Zaluzhny called his late aide a “reliable shoulder” to lean on since the beginning of the Russian war on Ukraine. He said there’s going to be an investigation to see what happened for sure.

Lawmaker Mariana Bezuhla also called for an investigation into Chastiakov’s death. She said that she never imagined the major “would die as a result of carelessness on his birthday.” She went on to say that grenades shouldn’t be given as gifts and kept at home.

Chastiakov wasn’t the only service member to die recently. On November 3, a Russian missile strike hit a location in the Zaporizhzhia region where the Ukrainian military was holding a medals ceremony. The 128th Mountain Assault Brigade lost 19 members in the strike. An investigation is being conducted into the military leaders who organized that event.

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