Foreign Intelligence Service of Ukraine

The Foreign Intelligence Service of Ukraine (Ukrainian: Служба зовнішньої розвідки України, romanized: Sluzhba zovnishn’oyi rozvidky Ukrayiny, SZR) is an independent state body, which carries out its intelligence activities in political, economic, military and technical, scientific and technical, information and ecological spheres and subordinates directly to the President of Ukraine.

The Foreign Intelligence Service
Служба Зовнішньої Розвідки
Sluzhba zovnishn’oyi rozvidky Ukrayiny
Agency overview
FormedOctober 14, 2004
Preceding agencies
  • The First Headquarters of the National Security Service
  • National Security Service Intelligence Headquarters
  • The General Headquarters of Intelligence of the Security Service of Ukraine (SSU)
  • Intelligence Department of the Security Service of Ukraine
JurisdictionGovernment of Ukraine
Headquarters24/1, Nahirna Street, Kiev[1]
Agency executives
  • SZR Chairman
  • Valeriy Yevdokimov[3]
Parent agencyPresident of Ukraine
Child agency
  • Institute of FISU (educational)
WebsiteOfficial website

The Constitution of Ukraine, the Act of Ukraine on Intelligence bodies[4] and other norms and regulations of Ukraine are the principal guidance to the Foreign Intelligence Service activities.


The original missions of the Foreign Intelligence Service of Ukraine (SZR) are assigned as follows:[5]

  • collecting, evaluating, analyzing and disseminate intelligence to the heads of the highest decision-making bodies of Ukraine in accordance with the applicable law;
  • implementing special measures to further state policy of Ukraine in political, economic, military and technical, ecological and information spheres, as well as to contribute to national defense, foster economic development, and promote science and technology;
  • safeguarding Ukrainian missions abroad, providing security to the staff and their family members in the host country as well as attached officers who have access to data of state secret;
  • participating in international operations addressing such high-priority issues as organized crime, terrorism, drug trafficking, illegal trade of arms and respective technologies, and illegal migration;
  • providing counter measures to external threats that can affect National security of Ukraine, lives and health of its citizens, and state establishments abroad.


On 27 January 1919 the Ukrainian People's Republic set up Ukraine's first foreign intelligence agency, the Department of Political Affairs of the Ministry of Internal Affairs of the Directory of the Ukrainian People's Republic.[6] Following the defeat of the Ukrainian People's Republic (UNR) and the incorporation of Ukraine into the Soviet Union this agency was used to gather information about the general situation in Soviet Ukraine, the selection and training agents, residents and couriers.[6] During this period the military special service of the UNR in exile sometimes worked in close contact with intelligence from other countries – mainly Romania, Japan, France, and the United Kingdom.[6] Although it was Poland who hosted and cooperated most with UNR's foreign intelligence agency in exile in the 1920s and 1930s.[6] Since 2019 on 27 January the "Day of Foreign Intelligence of Ukraine" is honoured.[6]

The modern-day Foreign Intelligence Service of Ukraine (FISU) started its activity on October 14, 2004, the day when the President of Ukraine, Leonid Kuchma signed the Decree "On the Foreign Intelligence Service of Ukraine".[7][8] Since then, created on the basis of the Intelligence Department of the Chief Directorate of Intelligence for the SBU, it has been functioning as an independent state body. On December 1, 2005 the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine approved the Law "On the Foreign Intelligence Service of Ukraine".[9] Later it was decided to celebrate on that day the anniversary of creation of the Foreign Intelligence Service of Ukraine.

The FISU organization was formed to meet principal demands of the Service. It comprises operative, analytical, technical, research and development departments, as well as elements of legal support, human resources, logistics and administration. The FISU Institute is responsible for initial training and refresher courses training of foreign intelligence officers.

The FISU is directly subordinated to the President of Ukraine, who appoints the Chairman of the Service. Currently Colonel General Malomuzh Mykola Grygorovych who took his position on April 3, 2005 heads the FISU.

The FISU cooperates with other intelligence bodies of Ukraine, state authorities, institutions, establishments, as well as organizations, and law enforcement agencies. The FISU has established official contacts and maintained partnership relations with more than 100 foreign special services as well as with the NATO Office of Security. Today the primary issue of Ukrainian foreign policy involves enhancing cooperation with such international organizations as NATO and the European Union. In particular, within the frameworks of the EU-Ukraine integration program, the FISU participates in actions aimed at combating terrorism, countering organized crime, monitoring illegal migration, eliminating drug trafficking, human beings traffic.

According to the Constitution, the FISU operates under direction of the President of Ukraine and the Defense and Security Council of Ukraine, it is also under supervision of the Verkhovna Rada (the Supreme Council of Ukraine). The Accounting Chamber of Ukraine monitors budget expenditures on FISU maintenance. The General Prosecutor of Ukraine and authorized officials provide law enforcement of FISU activities.

The development of the organization as an independent structure and elaboration of legal underpinning for the FISU are coupled with the Service’s routine work. This process engages settlement of key issues concerning legal and economic support, and personnel management on both state and institutional levels. To meet demands of democratic states the FISU has made a first step towards reformation of Ukrainian law enforcement agencies. The Service has gained the status of an independent state body and it has been detached from law enforcement agency. The FISU is caring out its practical actions in the context of world tendency towards strengthening intelligence in the security support systems, and enhancing drastically the overall information. The improvement of intelligence direction and control system is aimed at enhancing Service ability to disrupt external threats that may affect the Ukrainian national security, as well as at raising its preparedness to provide an immediate response to hostile actions. An issue of key importance is ensuring impossibility of exploiting foreign intelligence for the purposes not determined within the laws of Ukraine. Another major factor of the Service reorganization is creating effective and democratic control system over the FISU activities.

The recent dramatic changes in the world as well as in Ukraine have made the FISU elaborate new approaches of its further activities including Ukrainian reformation process, its various initiatives in the sphere of reorganization of entire state system, elimination of duplication in state bodies functions, responses to possible threats in the sphere of national defense. Besides, the FISU exerts every effort to adapt its structure and activities to new challenges which Ukraine faces on its road to a gradual integration into the European Union and the North Atlantic Treaty Organization and to enhance cooperation with neighboring and other countries in the field of regional and global security.

On December 16, 2010 FISU and the "Yaroslaviv Val" publishing house presented a book Leaders of the Ukrainian Foreign Intelligence. The book uncovers information about intelligence agents of the Soviet Ukraine as well as Ukraine of 1918–1920.[10]

Directors of SZR

As part of SBU (Department of Intelligence, the Chief Directorate of Intelligence)
  • Kovtun, Heorhiy Kyrylovych – December 1991 – December 1992
  • Sharkov, Oleksandr Kostiantynovych – January 1993 – July 1995
  • Abramov, Viacheslav Volodymyrovych – July 1995 – December 1998
  • Rozhen, Leonid Mykolayovych – February 1999 – November 2000
  • Cherevan, Oleksandr Viktorovych – December 2000 – June 2003
As an independent agency
  • Syniansky, Oleh Hryhorovych – November 2003 – April 3, 2005
  • Colonel General Malomuzh, Mykola Grygorovych[11] – April 3, 2005 – June 18, 2010
    • On June 19, 2010 TV-channel Inter informed that Malomuzh who was relieved of his duties as the chair of the service earlier[12] was appointed as the Presidential adviser by the order № 714/2010.[13]
  • General Illiashov, Grigoriy Oleksiyovych[14] – June 18, 2010 – February 26, 2014
  • Lieutenant general Hvozd, Viktor Ivanovych[15] – February 27, 2014
  • Yehor Bozhok[16] – September 13, 2017 – March 14, 2019[17]
  • Vladyslav Bukhariev – 11 June 2019 – 11 September 2019[18]
  • Valeriy Yevdokimov since 20 September 2019[19]

Long Service Medal


  1. Інформація для контактів Archived 2011-01-08 at the Wayback Machine
  3. (in Ukrainian) Про призначення В.Євдокимова Головою Служби зовнішньої розвідки України, Office of the President of Ukraine (20 September 2019)
  4. Foreign Intelligence Service of Ukraine Archived 2011-10-03 at the Wayback Machine
  5. Foreign Intelligence Service of Ukraine Archived 2008-01-16 at the Wayback Machine
  6. (in Ukrainian) As the Petlivtsi spy on the Bolsheviks, Ukrayinska Pravda (January 27, 2019)
  7. Foreign Intelligence Service of Ukraine Archived 2008-10-01 at the Wayback Machine
  8. Foreign Intelligence Service of Ukraine Archived 2011-10-03 at the Wayback Machine
  9. Foreign Intelligence Service of Ukraine Archived 2011-10-03 at the Wayback Machine
  10. Презентовано книгу "Керівники української зовнішньої розвідки" Archived 2011-01-09 at the Wayback Machine
  11. Foreign Intelligence Service of Ukraine Archived 2008-10-01 at the Wayback Machine
  12. (video) (in Russian)
  13. Copy of the official document Archived 2010-06-22 at the Wayback Machine (in Ukrainian)
  14. Presidential Order #703/2010
  15. Presidential Order #164/2014
  16. U.S. intelligence: Russia hopes to oust Poroshenko, bring pro-Russian parliament to power, Ukrinform (30 January 2019)
    Presidential Order #273/2017
  17. President sacks chief of Ukraine's Foreign Intelligence Service, Ukrinform (14 March 2019)
  18. (in Ukrainian) Zelensky appointed head of the Foreign Intelligence Service of the People's Deputy "Batkivshchyna", Ukrayinska Pravda (11 June 2019)
  19. President appoints new Foreign Intelligence Service chief, (20 September 2019)
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