Spain-based duo of Sadick Adams and Rabiu Mohammed as well as Benfica striker Ishmael Yartey were excluded from the 21-man squad.
The three players were instrumental in the Satellites qualification for the tournament and their exclusion came as a major surprise.
There was also the shock exclusion of home-based players Paul Addo and highly-rated Ekow Benson.
Andre Ayew, who plays for French side Lorient, will lead the seven Europe-based players in the squad.
Nice duo of Abeiku Quansah and Adu Kofi as well as Ransford Osei, Jonathan Mensah, Dominic Adiyah and David Addy complete the line-up of Eurpoe-based players.
Real Madrid wing back Daniel Opare was left out of the squad because of a protracted knee injury.
Ghana will play hosts Rwanda, Cameroon and Mali in Group A.
The Satellites will begin their campaign on 18 January against Cameroon at the Stade National in Kigali.
Ghana last played in the Africa Youth Championship at 2003 edition in Burkina Faso where they failed to progress past the group stage.
Squad: Goalkeepers: Daniel Adjei, Joseph Addo, Robert Dabou
Defenders: Kassimu Ghandi, Samuel Inkoom, David Addy, Philip Boampong, Daniel Addo, Jonathan Mensah, Godfred Rockson, Emmanuel Larbi Koomson
Midfielders: Abeiku Quansah, Enoch Adu-Kofi, Gladson Awaku, Dede Ayew, Emmanuel Agyeman Badu, Gafaru Abdul Nasiru
Strikers: Latif Salifu, Ransford Osei, Dominic Adiyah, Isaac Donkor