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The Ukraine Portal - Портал України

Україна  (Ukrainian)
ISO 3166 codeUA

Ukraine (Ukrainian: Україна, romanizedUkraïna, pronounced [ʊkrɐˈjinɐ] (listen)) is a country in Eastern Europe. It is the second-largest European country after Russia, which it borders to the east and northeast. Prior to the ongoing Russo-Ukrainian War, Ukraine covered approximately 600,000 square kilometres (230,000 sq mi), and was the eighth-most populous country in Europe, with a population of around 41 million people. It is also bordered by Belarus to the north; by Poland, Slovakia, and Hungary to the west; and by Romania and Moldova to the southwest; with a coastline along the Black Sea and the Sea of Azov to the south and southeast. Kyiv is the nation's capital and largest city. The country's national language is Ukrainian, and most people are also fluent in Russian.

During the Middle Ages, the area was a key centre of East Slavic culture under the state of Kievan Rus', which emerged in the 9th century and was ultimately destroyed by the Mongol invasions of the 13th century. After the Kingdom of Galicia–Volhynia emerged, the area was contested, divided, and ruled by a variety of external powers for the next 600 years; including the Polish–Lithuanian Commonwealth, the Austrian Empire, the Ottoman Empire, and the Tsardom of Russia. The Cossack Hetmanate emerged in central Ukraine in the 17th century, but was partitioned between Russia and Poland, and ultimately absorbed by the Russian Empire. After the Russian Revolution, a Ukrainian national movement re-emerged, and formed the Ukrainian People's Republic in 1917. This short-lived state was forcibly reconstituted by the Bolsheviks into the Ukrainian Soviet Socialist Republic, which became a founding member of the Soviet Union in 1922. In the 1930s, millions of Ukrainians were killed by the Holodomor, a Stalin-era man-made famine.

Following the collapse of the Soviet Union in 1991, Ukraine regained independence and declared itself neutral, forming a limited military partnership with the post-Soviet Commonwealth of Independent States, while also joining the Partnership for Peace with NATO in 1994. In 2013, a series of mass demonstrations, known as the Euromaidan, erupted across Ukraine, eventually escalating into the Revolution of Dignity in 2014, which led to the establishment of a new government and pro-Russian unrest. During this period, unmarked Russian troops invaded the Crimean Peninsula, which was later annexed by Russia; and pro-Russia unrest in Ukraine's Donbas culminated in Russia-backed separatists seizing territory throughout the region, sparking the War in Donbas. This series of events marked the beginning of the ongoing Russo-Ukrainian War, and in a major escalation of the conflict in February 2022, Russia launched a full-scale invasion of Ukraine. Since the outbreak of war with Russia in 2014, Ukraine has continued to seek closer economic, political, and military ties with the Western world, including with the United States, European Union, and NATO.

Ukraine is a unitary republic under a semi-presidential system and a developing country, ranking 77th on the Human Development Index. Ukraine is the poorest country in Europe by nominal GDP per capita, and has high levels of corruption. However, due to its extensive fertile land, pre-war Ukraine was one of the largest grain exporters in the world. It is a founding member of the United Nations, as well as a member of the Council of Europe, the World Trade Organization, and the OSCE, and in the process of joining the European Union and becoming a NATO member. (Full article...)

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Mariupol (UK: /ˌmæriˈpɒl/, US: /ˌmɑːriˈpəl/ (listen); Ukrainian: Маріу́поль [mɐr⁽ʲ⁾iˈupolʲ] (listen); Russian: Мариу́поль [mərʲɪˈupəlʲ]) is a city on the north coast of the Sea of Azov at the mouth of the Kalmius river, in the Pryazovia region of Ukraine. Prior to the 2022 Russian invasion of Ukraine and its capture by Russia, it was the tenth-largest city in Ukraine and the second-largest in Donetsk Oblast, with an estimated population of 431,859, according to a 2021 census estimate. Following its capture, the population is now, according to Ukrainian authorities, estimated to be less than 100,000.

Not only was Mariupol a centre for trade and manufacturing, it also played a key role in the development of higher education and various other businesses as well as being a Black Sea coast resort area. From 1948 to 1989, the city was named Zhdanov, after the Soviet functionary Andrei Zhdanov, as part of the practice of renaming cities after Communist leaders. Mariupol was founded on the site of a former Cossack encampment known as Kalmius, and granted city rights in 1778. Mariupol played a key role in the industrialization of Ukraine, and was a centre for the grain trade, metallurgy, and heavy engineering, including the Illich Steel & Iron Works and Azovstal Iron and Steel Works. (Full article...)
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In the news

1 October 2022 – Russo-Ukrainian War
2022 Russian invasion of Ukraine
Battle of Donbas
Second Battle of Lyman
Ukrainian troops liberate Lyman after weeks of fighting for the city and one day after the annexation of the Donetsk People's Republic to Russia. (The Guardian)
The Ministry of Defence of Russia says that it has withdrawn troops from the town of Lyman due to "a threat of encirclement". (BBC News)
After the defeat in Lyman, the head of Chechnya, Ramzan Kadyrov, calls on the Russian government to introduce martial law and use low-yield nuclear weapons in Ukraine. (Moskovskij Komsomolets)
War crimes in the 2022 Russian invasion of Ukraine
Attacks on civilians in the 2022 Russian invasion of Ukraine
A civilian convoy of seven cars attacked by Russian forces is discovered in Kupiansk Raion in Kharkiv Oblast with 24 people being killed, including a pregnant woman and 13 children, according to local governor Oleh Synyehubov. (Ukrainska Pravda)
30 September 2022 – Russo-Ukrainian War
2022 Russian invasion of Ukraine

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Army camp at Balaklava in the Crimean War, 1855.

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