History, capital, borders, area, population, language, currency and the ongoing Ukraine-Russia crisis
Ukraine-Russia crisis: Ukraine said 7 people were killed and 9 injured due to Russian shelling, Reuters news agency reported. Russia and Ukraine are at an undeclared war after Russian President Vladimir Putin recognized the independence of two breakaway regions in eastern Ukraine on February 21. These are Luhansk and Donestk. In this context, let’s take a look at Ukraine, its capital, borders, history, geography, people and more.
Quick facts about Ukraine
Ukrainian zone: 603,628 km2
Ukrainian capital: Kyiv
Ukrainian language: Ukrainian
President of Ukraine: Volodymyr Zelensky (head of state)
Ukrainian Prime Minister: Denys Shmyhal (head of government)
Ukrainian currency: Hryvnia (₴) (UAH)
Ukrainian population: 41,167,336 (as of January 2022)
Capital and borders of Ukraine
Ukraine is the second largest country in Europe after Russia. Its capital is Kiev, the largest city in the country. The nation shares borders with Russia to the east and northeast, Belarus to the north, Poland, Slovakia and Hungary to the west, and Romania and Moldova to the south. It has a coastline along the Sea of Azov and the Black Sea.
History of Ukraine
Ukraine became a fully independent nation at the end of the 20th century after the fall of the Soviet Union.
The country was previously ruled by Poland-Lithuania, Russia and the USSR. It became independent for a brief period from 1918 to 1920, but some western regions were ruled by Poland, Romania and Czechoslovakia between the two world wars.
Subsequently, the nation became part of the Soviet Union as the Ukrainian Soviet Socialist Republic (SSR).
With the fall of the Soviet Union in 1991, the Ukrainian Soviet Socialist Republic became a sovereign nation in 1990 and became independent on August 24, 1991.
After gaining independence, the country changed its name to Ukraine and got rid of its Russian imperial heritage. The western region of Ukraine wants to integrate with the west, while the eastern region with Russia.
Ukraine is the 46th largest country in the world and the second largest country in Europe. The total area of Ukraine is more than six lakh km2.
The total population of Ukraine is over 4 crores. About 78% of the country’s inhabitants are ethnic Ukrainians while 22% of them come from other countries. There are 86.3 men for every 100 women.
Although many languages are spoken in the country, the official language of the country is Ukrainian.
The country’s official currency is the Ukrainian hryvnia (₴) (UAH).
The majority of the religion practiced in the country is Christianity. About 67.3% of the population declared to adhere to one or the other stream of Orthodox Christianity.
Distance between India and Ukraine
The distance between India and Ukraine is more than 5,000 km and it takes about five hours of flight to reach Ukraine from India.
What is Ukraine famous for?
Besides its beautiful and diverse landscape, Ukraine is known for the following:
1- The deepest metro station in the world, Arsenal, is located in Ukraine.
2- Ukraine’s literacy rate is around 99.8%, the fourth highest in the world.
3- The average rate of life expectancy is about 71.48 years.
4- According to the World Health Organization (WHO), Ukraine is the sixth largest alcohol-consuming country in the world.
5- The most popular sports in Ukraine are football and boxing.
6- It is the first country in the world to give up its nuclear arsenal.
The conflict between the two nations began when then Ukrainian President Viktor Yanukovych rejected an Association Agreement with the European Union in favor of closer ties with Moscow. His government was overthrown by the people in what became known as the “Revolution of Dignity”.
Russia in return annexed Ukraine’s Crimean peninsula and backed the separatist rebellion in the country’s eastern region. Brookings, the US-based think tank, described the seizure as the biggest land grab on the continent since World War II.
Russia then attacked Donbass, the industrial heartland of Ukraine. As a result of the armed conflict between Ukrainian government forces and Russian-backed separatists, around 14,000 people lost their lives, leaving others injured.
While Ukraine and the West have accused Russia of supporting separatist leaders and sending an arsenal to the rebellions, Russia has consistently denied its involvement in the armed conflict.
NATO is at the heart of the ongoing conflict between the two nations. While Ukraine aspires to join the group, Russia protests against this request.
There are a few reasons behind Russia’s protest. First, he views Ukraine as part of his “sphere of influence” rather than an independent state. Second, it will extend the footprint of the cluster to its border. Third, Russia fears that Ukraine will attempt to retake Crimea through military action.
Russia published security pacts and presented them to the West. He demanded that NATO refuse membership to Ukraine and other former Soviet countries, and de-escalate troops and weapons in central and eastern Europe. The West and NATO, however, have rejected Russia’s demands.
Read also | Explained: What is the conflict between Russia and Ukraine? The main reasons for the Russian-Ukrainian conflict