Kremlin chief Vladimir Putin has dismissed the previous Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu from his position and proposed Andrei Beloussov as his successor. Shoigu should instead become secretary of the National Security Council. The Kremlin announced this on Sunday evening.

Putin has fired his defense minister, Sergei Shoigu. The Russian state agency Tass reported this on Sunday from the Federation Council, where Putin’s proposals for the composition of the new Russian government were received. A little later, the Kremlin made the dismissal official. Shoigu’s successor is to be the previous deputy prime minister, Andrei Beloussov. “Today the winner on the battlefield is the one who is more open to innovations and their implementation,” said Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov, explaining Putin’s decision to appoint a civilian to head the Defense Ministry.

Shoigu had been defense minister since 2012, making him one of Putin’s longest-serving ministers. He had recently been criticized by Russia’s war supporters for his behavior in Ukraine. A few weeks ago, one of Shoigu’s deputies, Timur Ivanov, was arrested on corruption charges. Observers interpreted this as a sign of power struggles within the Russian military and security apparatus.

Shoigu is now set to become secretary of the National Security Council. As a result, Putin fired acting secretary Nikolai Patrushev. The Kremlin announced this on Sunday evening in Moscow. However, Parliament still needs to approve the new appointment.

Beloussov, whom Putin proposed as his successor as defense minister, was previously deputy to Prime Minister Mikhail Misushin. Putin is also said to have suggested that Sergei Lavrov remain Russian Foreign Minister.