10 Dec 2018 12:05

Vice Adm. Igor Kostyukov becomes head of Russia's military intelligence - source

MOSCOW. Dec 10 (Interfax-AVN) - Vice Adm. Igor Kostyukov has been appointed head of the Russian General Staff's Main Intelligence Directorate (GRU), a source familiar with the situation told Interfax-AVN on Monday.

"The appointment took place at the end of last week," he said.

Kostyukov had been acting GRU head since the death of Col. Gen. Igor Korobov, previous GRU head, on November 21.

Kostyukov is under the U.S. sanctions.

According to the Kommersant newspaper, Kostyukov was born in the Amur region on February 21, 1961. He received naval education and graduated from the Military-Diplomatic Academy. He was directly involved in running the operation in Syria as a top military intelligence official.

According to Kommersant, Kostyukov was awarded a hero of Russia title and the Golden Star medal in 2017 for courage and heroism in the line of duty. He was also decorated with several orders.

According to the Russian Defense Ministry website, the Main Intelligence Directorate gathers, analyzes and sums up information on the military and political situation around Russia, predicts its development, and reports to the Russian political leadership and top brass in a timely manner on real and potential threats to the country's national interests and security.