Military ranks of Ukraine

Armed Forces of Ukraine
Main branches
Ground Forces
Air Force
Navy
Airmobile Forces
Special Operations Forces
Other Corps
Naval Infantry
Related Services
Ministry of Defence
General Staff
Ministry of Internal Affairs
National Space Agency
Intelligence
Security Service
Foreign Intelligence Service
Military Intelligence Service
History of the Ukrainian Military
History of Ukraine
History of Ukraine during WWII
History of Ukraine during WWI

The military ranks of Ukraine were created in March 1992 after adopting the law of Ukraine "About Universal Military Duty and Military Service". The rank structure corresponds the generic military rank structure of the Soviet Union. Ukrainian armed forces have two styles of ranks - army, which is used by ground forces as well as aerial forces, and naval - the Ukrainian Navy.

Ukraine, like the Russian Federation, eliminated the descriptor "of aviation" following the air force ranks. The rank of a serviceman of a guards unit, formation or ship may be followed by the word “guards.” The rank of a serviceman of the legal, medical or veterinary professions shall be followed by the words “of Justice,” “of the medical service,” or “of the veterinary service,” to their respective ranks. The rank of a citizen having reserve or retired status shall be followed by the words “reserve” or “retired,” respectively.[1]

Ukraine also added ranks the general of Army of Ukraine as well as admiral of Ukrainian Navy.

Rank insignia currently in force

Ground Forces, Special Operations and Air Assault Forces

Officers

Equivalent
NATO Code
OF-10OF-9OF-8OF-7OF-6OF-5OF-4OF-3OF-2OF-1OF(D) & Student officer
Ukraine
(Edit)
General of the army of Ukraine
(Генерал армії України)
Colonel General
(Генерал-полковник)
Lieutenant General
(Генерал-лейтенант)
Major General
(Генерал-майор)
Brigadier
(Бригадний генерал)
Colonel
(Полковник)
Lieutenant Colonel
(Підполковник)
Major
(Майор)
Captain
(Капітан)
First Lieutenant
(Старший лейтенант)
Lieutenant
(Лейтенант)
Second Lieutenant
(Хорунжий)
Officer cadet
(курсант)

Other Ranks and NCOs

Equivalent
NATO Code
OR-9OR-8OR-7OR-6OR-5OR-4OR-3OR-2OR-1
Ukraine
(Edit)
Chief Master Sergeant
Головний майстер-сержант
Master Sergeant
Майстер-сержант
Sergeant First Class
Головний штаб-сержант
Second Sergeant
Штаб-сержант
Third Sergeant
Головний сержант
Staff Sergeant
Старший сержант
Sergeant
Сержант
Corporal
Капрал
Private First Class
Старший солдат
Private
Солдат

Air Force

Officers

Equivalent
NATO Code
OF-10OF-9OF-8OF-7OF-6OF-5OF-4OF-3OF-2OF-1OF(D) & Student officer
Ukraine
(Edit)
Генерал армії України Генерал-полковник Генерал-лейтенант Генерал-майор Бригадний генерал Полковник Підполковник Майор Капітан Старший лейтенант Лейтенант Хорунжий Курсмант
General of the Army of Ukraine Colonel General Lieutenant general Major general Brigadier Polkovnik Podpolkovnik Major Captain First Lieutenant Lieutenant Third Lieutenant Cadet

Other Ranks and NCOs

Equivalent
NATO Code
OR-9OR-8OR-7OR-6OR-5OR-4OR-3OR-2OR-1
Ukraine
(Edit)
Chief Master Sergeant
Головний майстер-сержант
Master Sergeant
Майстер-сержант
Sergeant First Class
Головний штаб-сержант
Second Sergeant
Штаб-сержант
Technical Sergeant
Головний сержант
Staff Sergeant
Старший сержант
Sergeant
Сержант
Corporal
Капрал
Airman First Class
Старший солдат
Airman
Солдат

Fleet forces

Officers

Equivalent
NATO Code
OF-10OF-9OF-8OF-7OF-6OF-5OF-4OF-3OF-2OF-1OF(D) & Student officer
Shoulder insignia
Ukraine
(Edit)
No equivalent No equivalent
Admiral
Адмірал
Vice Admiral
Віце-адмірал
Rear Admiral
Контр-адмірал
Commodore
Командор
First rank Captain
Капітан I рангу
Second rank captain
Капітан II рангу
Third rank captain
Капітан III рангу
Captain lieutenant
Капітан-лейтенант
First lieutenant
Старший лейтенант
Lieutenant
Лейтенант
Second Lieutenant
Молодший лейтенант

Naval ratings

Equivalent
NATO Code
OR-9OR-8OR-7OR-6OR-5OR-4OR-3OR-2OR-1
Shoulder insignia
Ukraine
(Edit)
Fleet Chief Petty Officer
Головний майстер-старшина
Master Chief Petty Officer
Старший майстер-старшина
Senior Chief Petty Officer
Майстер-старшина
Chief Petty Officer 1st class
Штаб-старшина
Chief Petty Officer 2nd class
Головний корабельний старшина
Petty Officer 1st class
Головний старшина
Petty Officer 2nd class
Старшина 1-ої статті
Master Seaman
Старшина 2ої статті
Leading Seaman
Старший матрос
Seaman
Матрос

Marine Corps, Naval Aviation and Shore Establishment

Officers

Equivalent
NATO Code
OF-10OF-9OF-8OF-7OF-6OF-5OF-4OF-3OF-2OF-1OF(D) & Student officer
Shoulder
insignia
No equivalent No equivalent
Colonel General
(Генерал-полковник)
Lieutenant General
(Генерал-лейтенант)
Major General
(Генерал-майор)
Brigadier
(Бригадний генерал)
Colonel
(Полковник)
Lieutenant Colonel
(Підполковник)
Major
(Майор)
Captain
(Капітан)
First Lieutenant
(Старший лейтенант)
Lieutenant
(Лейтенант)
Second Lieutenant
(Хорунжий)

Other ranks

Equivalent
NATO Code
OR-9OR-8OR-7OR-6OR-5OR-4OR-3OR-2OR-1
Shoulder
insignia
Sleeve insignia
Master Gunnery Sergeant
Chief master sergeant
Головний майстер-сержант
Master Sergeant
Майстер-сержант
Sergeant First Class
Головний штаб-сержант
Second Sergeant
Штаб-сержант
Gunnery Sergeant
Technical Sergeant
Головний сержант
Staff Sergeant
Старший сержант
Sergeant
Сержант
Corporal
Капрал
Lance Corporal
Старший матрос
Private
Airman
Матрос

Old ranks

General and flag officer ranks

Army rank
(Ground Forces, Air Force)
Navy rank
Shoulder insignia Rank name Shoulder insignia
Rank name Sleeve insignia
OF-10 General of Army of Ukraine
Генерал армії України
(Heneral armii Ukrainy)
No equivalent
OF-9 Colonel general
Генерал-полковник
(Heneral-polkovnyk)
Admiral
Адмірал
(Admiral)
OF-8 General-lieutenant
Генерал-лейтенант
(Heneral-leitenant)
Vice-admiral
Віце-адмірал
(Vitse-admiral)
OF-7 General-major
Генерал-майор
(Heneral-maior)
Counter-admiral
Контр-адмірал
(Kontr-admiral)

Officer ranks

Army rank
(Ground Forces, Air Force)
Navy rank
Shoulder insignia Rank name Shoulder insignia Rank name Sleeve insignia
Senior officers (Старший офіцерський склад)
OF-5 Colonel
Полковник
(Polkovnyk)
Captain, 1st rank
Капітан 1-го рангу
(Kapitan 1-ho ranhu)
OF-4 Lieutenant colonel (lieutenant colonel)
Підполковник
lieutenant colonel
Captain, 2nd rank
Капітан 2-го рангу
(Kapitan 2-ho ranhu)
OF-3 Major
Майор
(Maior)
Captain, 3rd rank
Капітан 3-го рангу
(Kapitan 3-ho ranhu)
Junior officers (Молодший офіцерський склад)
OF-2 Captain
Капітан
(Kapitan)
Captain-lieutenant
Капітан-лейтенант
(Kapitan-leitenant)
OF-1 First lieutenant
Старший лейтенант
(Starshyi leitenant)
First lieutenant
Старший лейтенант
(Starshyi leitenant)
Lieutenant
Лейтенант
(Leitenant)
Lieutenant
Лейтенант
(Leitenant)
Second Lieutenant
Молодший лейтенант
(Molodshyi leitenant)
Lieutenant
Молодший лейтенант
(Molodshyi leitenant)

Enlisted ranks

Army rank
(Ground Forces, Air Force)
Navy rank
Shoulder insignia Rank name Shoulder insignia Rank name
Sergeants and starshinas (Сержантсько-старшинський склад)
OR-9 Senior praporshchik (sergeant major)
Старший прапорщик
(Starshyi praporshchyk)
Senior midshipman
Старший мічман
(Starshyi michman)
Praporshchik (master sergeant)
Прапорщик
(Praporshchyk)
midshipman
Мічман
(Michman)
OR-8 Starshina (first sergeant)
Старшина
(Starshyna)
Chief ship starshina
Головний корабельний старшина
(Holovnyy korabelnyi starshyna)
OR-7 Senior sergeant (sergeant first class)
Старший сержант
(Starshyi serzhant)
Chief starshina
Головний старшина
(Holovnyi starshyna)
OR-6 Sergeant (staff sergeant)
Сержант
(Serzhant)
Starshina, 1st class
Старшина 1-ої статті
(Starshyna 1-oi statti)
OR-4 Junior sergeant (sergeant)
Молодший сержант
(Molodshyi serzhant)
Starshina, 2nd class
Старшина 2ої статті
(Starshyna 2-oi statti)
Privates (Рядовий склад)
OR-2 Senior soldier
Старший солдат
(Starshyi soldat)
Senior matrose
Старший матрос
(Starshyi matros)
OR-1 Soldier
Солдат
(Soldat)
Matros]
Матрос
(Matros)

History of Ukrainian military ranks

The first half of the twentieth century

Category Ranks of the Army of the UNR Rank of the UGA, 1918 Ranks of the UIA (УПА) Rank of the
Ukrainian Soviet Army, 1919
Equivalent rank
(USA)
Collar
insignia[2]
Army rank, 1920 Naval rank, 1918 Army rank, 1944 Naval rank, 1944
General officers

Генеральна старшина
general starshina
-
No equivalent
No equivalent
No equivalent
No equivalent
Admiral of the Fleet
Адмірал флоту
(Admiral flotu)
Commander of the front
Комфронта
(Komfronta)
General of the army
and
fleet admiral
Colonel general
Генерал-полковник
(Heneral-polkovnyk)
Admiral
Адмірал
(admiral)
Centurion general
Генерал-сотник
(Heneral-sotnyk)
Colonel general
Генерал-полковник
(Heneral-polkovnyk)
Admiral
Адмірал
(admiral)
Army commander
Командарм
(Komandarm)
General
and
admiral
Lieutenant general
Генерал-поручник
(Heneral-poruchnyk)
Vice-admiral
Віце-адмірал
(Vitse-admiral)
Lieutenant general
Генерал-поручник
(Heneral-poruchyk)
General major
Генерал-майор
(Heneral-mayor)
Vice-admiral
Віце-адмірал
(Vitse-admiral)
Corps commander
Комкор
(Komkor)
Lieutenant general
and
vice admiral
Ensign general
Генерал-хорунжий
(Heneral-Khorunzhiy)
Counter-admiral
Контр-адмірал
(Kontr-admiral)
Platoon general
Генерал-чотар
(Heneral-chotar)
Counter-admiral
Контр-адмірал
(Kontr-admiral)
Division commander
Комдив
(Komdiv)
Major general
and
rear admiral (upper half)
Ensign general
Генерал-хорунжий
(Heneral-Khorunzhiy)
Brigade commander
Комбриг
(Kombrig)
Brigadier general
and
rear admiral (lower half)
Mace officers
Булавна старшина
Bulawa Starshina
Colonel
Полковник
(Polkovnyk)
Captain, 1st rank
Капітан 1-го рангу
(Kapitan 1-ho ranhu)
Colonel
Полковник
(Polkovnyk)
Colonel
Полковник
(Polkovnyk)
Captain-lieutenant
Капітан-лейтенант
(Kapitan-leytenant)
Regiment commander
or
Polkovnik
Комполка or Полковник
(Kompolka or Polkovnik)
Colonel
and
Captain
Sub-colonel
Підполковник
(Pidpolkovnyk)
Captain, 2nd rank
Капітан 2-го рангу
(Kapitan 2-ho ranhu)
Sub-colonel
Підполковник
(Pidpolkovnyk)
Sub-colonel
Підполковник
(Pidpolkovnyk)
Battalion commander
Комбат
(Kombat)
Lieutenant colonel
and
commander
Ataman
Отаман
(Otaman)
Major
Майор
(Mayor)
Battalion commander assistant
Помкомбат
(Pomkombat)
Major
and
Lieutenant commander
Junior officers

Молодша старшина
Junior Starshina
Centurion
Сотник
(Sotnyk)
Senior lieutenant
Старший лейтенант
(Starshiy leytenant)
Centurion
Сотник
(Sotnyk)
Centurion
Сотник
(Sotnyk)
Senior lieutenant
Старший лейтенант
(Starshiy leytenant)
Company commander
Комроты
(Komroty)
Captain
and
lieutenant
Lieutenant
Поручник
(Poruchnyk)
Lieutenant
Поручник
(Poruchnyk)
Lieutenant
Поручник
(Poruchnyk)
Lieutenant
Лейтенант
(Leytenant)
Company commander assistant
Помкомроты
(Pomkomroty)
First lieutenant
and
lieutenant (junior grade)
Ensign
Хорунжий
(Khorunzhiy)
Lieutenant
Лейтенант
(Leytenant)
Chotar
Чотар
(Chotar)
Ensign
Хорунжий
(Khorunzhiy)
Junior lieutenant
Молодший лейтенант
(Molodshiy leytenant)
Platoon commander
Комвзвода
(Komvzvoda)
Second lieutenant
and
ensign
Ensign
Хорунжий
(Khorunzhiy)
Sub-officers

Підстаршина
sub-starshina
Sub-ensign
Підхорунжий
(Pidkhorunzhiy)
Midshipman
Мічман
(Michman)
Sub-ensign
Підхорунжий
(Pidkhorunzhiy)
Sub-ensign
Підхорунжий
(Pidkhorunzhiy)
Sub-ensign
Підхорунжий
(Pidkhorunzhiy)
Starshina
Старшина
(Starshina)
Sergeant major
Brigadier
Бунчужний
(Bunchuzhnyi)
Mace senior dean
Булавний старший десятник
(Bulavniy starshiy desiatnyk)
Bunchuzhniy
Бунчужний
(Bunchuzhniy)
First sergeant
Platoon leader
Чотовий
(Chotovyi)
Senior dean
Старший десятник
(Starshiy desiatnyk)
Platoon leader
Чотовий
(Chotovyi)
Senior dean
Старший десятник
(Starshiy desiatnyk)
Assistant of platoon commander
Помкомвзвода
(Pomkomvzvoda)
Sergeant first class
Squad leader
Ройовий
(Royovyi)
Dean
Десятник
(Desiatnyk)
Squad leader
Ройовий
(Royovyi)
Dean
Десятник
(Desiatnyk)
Squad commander
Комот
(Komot)
Sergeant
Herald
Вістун
(Vistun)
Cossacks, sailors, privates
Козаки/Моряки/Рядовики
Team leader
Гуртковий
(Hurtkovyi)
Ship garde-marine
Корабельний ґардемарин
(Korabelniy gardemaryn)
Senior rifleman
or
senior strelet
Старший стрілець
(Starshiy strilets)
Senior Cossack
Старший козак
(Starshiy kozak)
Matrose-Herald
Матрос-вістун
(Matros-vistun)
Redarmyman
Красноармеец
(Krasnoarmeyets)
Private first class
Cossack
Козак
(Kozak)
Rifleman or strelet
Стрілець
(Strilets)
Cossack
Козак
(Kozak)
Matrose
Матрос
(Matros)
Private

Modern Ukraine

The independent Ukraine inherited the ranks of the Soviet Union. But there were some changes. The rank of "Єфрейтор" (efreitor) was changed to the "senior soldier" and the rank of private was changed to the "soldier". Also, marshall ranks and the category of praporshchyks/midshipmen were abolished.

New experimental insignia of 2009

The first graduates of the Training Centre for Sergeants of the Armed Forces of Ukraine in Kharkiv at once became the first professional sergeants, who clothed shoulder straps with a fundamentally new insignia.[3]

The new insignia of the ground forces and the Air Force of Ukraine
(from general of the army to senior soldier)
The new insignia of the Ukrainian Naval Force
(from admiral to junior lieutenant)

This innovation was aimed at the NATO standards. Until 2009, Ukrainian soldiers used a military rank insignia of the Soviet model. Before the innovation, for example, a Ukrainian major general could be confused with an ordinary major, as they both had only one star on the Soviet straps. The new straps of major general have two stars, like in the most NATO countries.[4] Also, the new system of military insignia makes possible to introduce new ranks, such as brigade general and new types of sergeant. New straps of generals have crossed maces (bulawas), which are kleinods (regalia) of Hetman, colonel and Otaman of the Host.

These experimental insignia never came into wide use and were abandoned shortly afterwards. Up until 2015 the Armed Forces kept using the Soviet-style insignia and rank system, albelt in the case of the Ground Forces and the Air Force the old insignia stayed with the officer corps while 2009 proposal for NCO insignia gained wider acceptance and thus replaced the Soviet insignia.

Sergeant major (the post of chief sergeant)

Chief sergeant of a branch of the armed forces is a projected post in Ukraine. The chief sergeant is a person who know almost all issues what relate to non-commissioned officers. Therefore, the chief sergeant of a branch of the armed forces may be adviser to the head of the appropriate level - for example, the commander of land forces of Ukraine. Now, the Ministry of Defence is working to change the statute and, possibly, the new post will be introduced in three or four years.[5] In airmobile units there are also posts of chief sergeant of the division and chief sergeant of the brigade.

2015 reforms

Late July 2015 the President Petro Poroshenko stated that Ukraine needed to introduce new military ranks that meet Ukrainian military traditions "and corresponds to the structure of NATO military ranks".[6] Still, the system initially proposed just replicated the Soviet hierarchy of military ranks and had no relation to the NATO system whatsoever - the only innovation being of a purely decorative character, namely, the appearance and composition of the shoulder strap insignia.

The reform of 2016 which finally emerged will, at long last, bring the rank insignia of the Ukrainian armed forces in line with the rank systems of its NATO partners and the rest of the world, while also, if successful, honor the traditions of Cossacks in Ukraine and the Ukrainian independence armies, the Ukrainian People's Army of the Russian Civil War and the Ukrainian War of Independence and the Second World War-era Ukrainian Insurgent Army forward.[7]

Project of the new insignia of the ground forces and the Air Force of Ukraine
(Old ranks system)
Project of the new insignia of the ground forces and the Air Force of Ukraine
(Expanded ranks system)

While option 1 uses the old system but with new other ranks insignia, option 2 uses a US-style insignia for enlisted ranks and NCOs plus the Brigadier general rank. In both cases, all officers use pips while the General of the Army of Ukraine has the crossed Bulawa as insignia. Early proposals had the General of the Army shoulder insignia to use the state coat of arms.

Adopted new insignia of the ground forces and the Air Force of Ukraine for 2016
(Expanded ranks system)

In 2016, new rank insignia designs were issued for the Navy, which included both shoulder and sleeve insignia for all ranks.

Project of the new insignia of the Navy of Ukraine
(Sea ratings and other ranks of the shore establishment)
Project of the new insignia of the Navy of Ukraine
(officer ranks)
Navy sleeve insignia

Uniforms using the revised system debuted on August 24, 2016 as Ukraine marked the silver jubilee of nationhood,[8] while matching those of its future NATO partner countries should it officially join the organization it pays tribute to the many Ukrainians who made countless sacrifices for the country through the centuries. In a break with the Soviet era past, the stars used for officers' ranking were replaced with British military style diamonds - inspired by those used by the Ground Forces during the Ukrainian State of 1918.

By 2017, the insignia of the Navy will begin to be utilized, the final design being separate shoulder and sleeve rank insignia similar to the Bulgarian Navy.

See also

References

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