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    Deputy Defense Minister Gen. Nikolai Makarov has been appointed chief of the General Staff of the Russian Armed Forces, the Russian president said on Tuesday.

    MOSCOW, June 3 (RIA Novosti) - Deputy Defense Minister Gen. Nikolai Makarov has been appointed chief of the General Staff of the Russian Armed Forces, the Russian president said on Tuesday.

    Gen. Makarov replaces Gen. Yury Baluyevsky, who has been appointed deputy secretary of Russia's Security Council.

    Dmitry Medvedev thanked Gen. Baluyevsky for the work he had done to upgrade the Armed Forces and said he had signed a decree on awarding him the Order of Service to the Motherland, 2nd Degree.

    Gen. Baluyevsky was appointed chief of the General Staff in July 2004.

    The new chief of staff thanked the president and said he was fully aware of the responsibility entrusted to him and would do all he could to achieve the goals set for the Armed Forces, working in conjunction with the Defense Ministry and the Security Council.

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