Former Russian general with strong Ukraine links dies suddenly

Alexei Fedorovich Maslov was Russia’s chief military representative to NATO  (via https://commons.wikimedia.org)
Alexei Fedorovich Maslov was Russia’s chief military representative to NATO (via https://commons.wikimedia.org)

A former commander-in-chief of Russian ground forces with links to Ukraine has died suddenly, the machine-building company where he worked has reported.

The military representative of Russia to NATO, Alexei Fedorovich Maslov, died in a military hospital in Moscow aged 70, on Christmas Day.

He entered the army in 1970 and served in various positions from Platoon commander to commander-in-chief of the ground forces in 2004.

From 2008 he has acted as Russia’s chief military representative to NATO, RBC reported.

Maslov worked for Uralvagonzavod - the world’s largest tank manufacturer - as an international sales representative.

In recent years Maslov worked as a “special representative of Uralvagonzavod for military-technical cooperation”, the company said on Telegram.

The company described him as an “outstanding military leader” who “remained faithful to the cause and the Fatherland until the last day”, with his contribution to the company “difficult to overestimate”.

Uralvagonzavod called him a “distinguished commander who made a valiant journey from a platoon commander to the commander-in-chief of the ground forces”.

“The bright memory of him and his deeds will forever remain in our hearts,” the tribute on Telegram read.

Maslov, who hails from a Russian region bordering on Ukraine, had close ties with Ukraine, the Telegraph reports.

After his four-year stint commanding Russia’s found forces, Maslov was appointed the deputy for Dmitry Rogozin, Russia’s then-envoy to Nato in Brussels.

Mr Rogozin, a staunch supporter of the Russian invasion of Ukraine who was wounded in a Ukrainian artillery strike last week, on Tuesday described the general as an “experienced officer, a demanding commander and a good person”.

His death comes days after a naval officer in charge of submarine building also suddenly died.

Alexander Buzakov, 65, was General Director of Russia’s Admiralty Shipyards in St Petersburg, and was responsible for building modern non-nuclear submarines for the Russian naval fleet.

Details on his cause of death have not been disclosed.

His company described his death as “sudden, untimely and tragic” but did not elaborate on the cause, the Telegraph reports.