Updated at 16:11,02-12-2016

Valery Vakulchyk appointed KGB head

Alyaksandr Lukashenka, by his November 16 edict, appointed Valery Vakulchyk to the position of chairperson of the Committee for State Security (KGB).

Mr. Vakulchyk formerly chaired the Investigative Committee of Belarus.

Born in the Brest region in 1964, Mr. Vakulchyk graduated from the Kharkiv Guards Higher Tank Command School in 1985, the USSR KGB's higher military counterintelligence school in 1992 and the Presidential Management Academy in 2011.

In May 2008, Mr. Vakulchyk was appointed head of the Presidential Administration's Operational and Analytical Center. In October 2011, he became chairperson of the Investigative Committee.

Mr. Vakulchyk succeeded Vadzim Zaytsaw, who was relieved of the position of KGB chairperson on November 9.

Leanid Maltsaw, state secretary of the Security Council of Belarus, said later that day that Mr. Zaytsaw had not been dismissed but suspended pending the results of an investigation into the recent suicide of KGB Lieutenant Colonel Alyaksandr Kazak. "If the investigation shows him and other officials as competent, he will be reinstated in the position without a doubt," Mr. Maltsaw said.

The 47-year-old Kazak was reportedly found dead in October in a forest near his country house a few kilometers off the Minsk Beltway.