A helicopter crashed in the city of Brovary, on the outskirts of Ukraine’s capital, Kyiv region on Wednesday, January 18, killing at least 18 people, including Ukraine’s entire interior ministry leadership team, according to officials.

Anton Geraschenko, a ministry adviser, confirmed on social media that among the passengers killed were Ukraine’s Interior Minister Denis Monastyrsky, First Deputy Minister Yevheniy Yenin, and State Secretary Yuriy Lubkovychis.  

Also Read | Ukraine’s interior minister Denys Monastyrsky, State Secretary Yuriy Lubkovychis killed in helicopter crash

The deputy head of Ukraine’s presidential office, Kyrylo Tymoshenko, said that at the time of the mishap, the minister had been en route to a war “hot spot” when his helicopter went down.

President Volodymyr Zelensky has expressed grief over the terrible tragedy that claimed the lives of “true patriots”. 

Also Read | Who was Bernard Kalb? Foreign affairs journalist dies at 100

Who is Denys Monastyrsky?

Denys Anatoliiovych Monastyrsky was born on June 12, 1980, in Khmelnytskyi. He graduated from the Faculty of Law of the Khmelnytskyi University of Management and Law. Monastyrsky was also a former student at the Koretsky Institute of State and Law of the National Academy of Sciences of Ukraine. He had a Ph.D. in law. 

In 2007 Monastyrsky started his career as a lawyer. He worked as an associate professor and was the head of the department of lawmaking and scientific expertise of the research part of the Khmelnytskyi University of Management and Law. 

Also Read | Joe Biden trolled for defending classified documents found in garage

During the 2019 Ukrainian presidential election, Monastyrsky was presented as an expert of presidential candidate Volodymyr Zelensky’s team on law enforcement reform.  

On July 16, 2021, he was appointed Minister of Internal Affairs after then-Interior Minister Arsen Avakov gave in his resignation.

The 42-year-old interior minister was a recognizable face for Ukrainians throughout the war. He used to update the public on casualties caused by Russian missile strikes since Ukraine was invaded in February 2022.