Andriy Melnyk is now an institution in German politics.

Hardly a day has passed since Russia's invasion of Ukraine that the ambassador hasn't made the headlines.

Melnyk is omnipresent in talk shows, newspaper interviews, radio talks and podcasts.

When he rants on Twitter against those who play down the war and those who are said to understand Russia, he doesn't skimp on the heavy artillery.

He was followed by 63,000 people on the news service in March, and there are currently almost 140,000 followers.

Gerhard Gnauck

Political correspondent for Poland, Ukraine, Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania based in Warsaw.

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Markus Wehner

Political correspondent in Berlin.

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The diplomat has become a media star.

But that will soon be over.

At least in the role of ambassador.

Because Melnyk is expected to give up his post in Berlin in early autumn.

Ukrainian diplomatic circles confirmed a corresponding report by the "Bild" newspaper to the FAZ.

However, the departure would not be a demotion.

Because the 46-year-old diplomat is to become deputy foreign minister in Kyiv.

Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba is said to have made this proposal, and President Volodymyr Zelenskyy is said to have agreed.

However, the government in Kyiv must make the official decision, which should happen in the course of July.

Criticism of leading social democrats for their stance on Russia

In the past few months, Melnyk has been constantly calling for the greatest possible help, especially heavy weapons, for his country.

In the dispute over the appropriate attitude towards Moscow's imperialism, he did not exclude Federal President Frank-Walter Steinmeier, whom he reproached for his earlier naïve policy towards Russia.

He criticized the Social Democratic Chancellor Olaf Scholz for his alleged hesitancy in arms deliveries and his unwillingness to travel to Kyiv.

Melnyk briefed the Germans on Ukraine's perspective.

And that motivates political actors and the media to question German policy towards Putin.

The fact that the Social Democrats Steinmeier, the former Economics Minister Sigmar Gabriel and the Schwerin Prime Minister Manuela Schwesig have apologized for their mistakes in Russia policy has to do with Melnyk's work - but nothing comparable has been heard from Scholz so far.

Above all, Melnyk fueled the debate as to whether the attacked Ukraine should be helped more quickly and decisively.

He did a good job for his country.

Even people from the federal government and the SPD, who found Melnyk exhausting, even a pain in the neck, admit that.

Melnyk's media fireworks, which he presented in perfect, differentiated German, were supported from Kyiv for a long time.

President Selenskyj and Foreign Minister Kuleba maintain open, sometimes provocative communication.

But Melnyk has recently overdone.

When Scholz temporarily refused to travel to Kyiv after the Federal President was not welcome there, Melnyk said: "Playing an offended liverwurst doesn't sound very statesmanlike."

After Selenskyj expressed his displeasure with this statement, the ambassador backtracked.

He regrets the statement that it was "diplomatically inappropriate" and "offended many people, not only in Germany".

He will expressly apologize to Scholz, who visited Kyiv in mid-June after much hesitation.

Melnyk also took back his words that many Ukrainians who had fled to Germany no longer wanted to stay here because Germany did not supply their homeland with enough heavy weapons.

The ambassador said in the FAZ podcast that he wanted to apologize if he had insulted thousands of Germans who were committed to helping his compatriots who had fled.

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