Euromaidan was a wave of demonstrations and civil unrest in Ukraine, which began on the night of 21 November 2013 with public protests in Maidan Nezalezhnosti in Kiev. The protests were sparked by the Ukrainian government's decision to suspend the signing of an association agreement with the European Union, instead choosing closer ties to Russia and the Eurasian Economic Union; the scope of the protests soon widened, with calls for the resignation of President Viktor Yanukovych and his government. The protests were fueled by the perception of "widespread government corruption", "abuse of power", "violation of human rights in Ukraine". Transparency International named President Yanukovych as the top example of corruption in the world; the situation escalated after the violent dispersal of protesters on 30 November, leading to many more protesters joining. The protests led to the 2014 Ukrainian revolution. During the Euromaidan, there were protests and clashes with police throughout Ukraine at the Maidan in Kiev, occupied and barricaded by protesters, along with some administrative buildings, including Kiev City State Administration.
On 8 December the crowd toppled a Lenin statue nearby. Protests and clashes increased in January, after the Ukrainian parliament passed a group of anti-protest laws. Protesters occupied government buildings in many regions of Ukraine; the protests climaxed in mid-February. Riot police advanced towards Maidan and clashed with protesters but did not occupy it. Police and activists fired live and rubber ammunition at multiple locations in Kiev. There was fierce fighting in Kiev on February 18–20; as a result of these events, the Agreement on settlement of political crisis in Ukraine was signed on 21 February 2014 by the President of Ukraine Viktor Yanukovych and the leaders of the parliamentary opposition under the mediation of the European Union and the Russian Federation. The signing was witnessed by the Foreign Ministers of Germany and Poland, Frank-Walter Steinmeier, Radosław Sikorski and the Director of the Continental Europe Department of the French Foreign Ministry, Eric Fournier. Vladimir Lukin, representing Russia, refused to sign the agreement.
Shortly after the agreement was signed and other high government officials fled the country. Protesters gained control of Yanukovych's private estate. Afterwards, the parliament removed Yanukovych from office, replaced the government with Oleksandr Turchynov, ordered that former Prime Minister Yulia Tymoshenko be released from prison. Events in Kiev were soon followed by the Crimean pro-Russian unrest in Eastern Ukraine. Despite the ousting of Yanukovych, the installation of a new government, the adoption of the Ukraine–European Union Association Agreement's political provisions, the protests have sustained pressure on the government to reject Russian influence in Ukraine; the demonstrations began on the night of 21 November 2013, when protests erupted in the capital, after the Ukrainian government suspended preparations for signing the Ukraine–European Union Association Agreement with the European Union, to seek closer economic relations with Russia. On 24 November 2013, clashes between police began.
Protesters strived to break cordon. Police used tear gas and batons. Protesters used tear gas and some fire crackers. After a few days of demonstrations an increasing number of university students joined the protests; the Euromaidan has been characterised as an event of major political symbolism for the European Union itself as "the largest pro-European rally in history." The protests continued despite heavy police presence sub-freezing temperatures, snow. Escalating violence from government forces in the early morning of 30 November caused the level of protests to rise, with 400,000–800,000 protesters, according to Russia's opposition politician Boris Nemtsov, demonstrating in Kiev on the weekends of 1 December and 8 December. In the preceding weeks, protest attendance had fluctuated from 50,000 to 200,000 during organised rallies. Violent riots took place 1 December and 19 January through 25 January in response to police brutality and government repression. Starting 23 January, several Western Ukrainian Oblast Governor buildings and regional councils were occupied in a revolt by Euromaidan activists.
In the Russophone cities of Zaporizhzhya and Dnipropetrovsk, protesters tried to take over their local government building, were met with considerable force from both police and government supporters. According to journalist Lecia Bushak writing in the 18 February 2014 issue of Newsweek magazine, EuroMaidan grown into something far bigger than just an angry response to the fallen-through EU deal. It's now about ousting his corrupt government. A turning point came in late February, when enough members of the president's party fled or defected for the party to lose its majority in parliament, leaving the opposition large enough to form the necessary quorum; this allowed parliament to pass a series of laws that removed police from Kiev, cancelled anti-protest operations, restored the 2004 constitution, freed political detainees, removed President Yanukovych from office. Yanukovych
Territorial defence battalions (Ukraine)
Territorial defence battalions were volunteer military units of the Armed Forces of Ukraine under the auspices of the Ukrainian Ministry of Defence in 2014–2015. They should not be confused with the volunteer units of Special Tasks Patrol Police of Ukraine which created along with territorial defense battalions, but under the auspices of the Ministry of Interior; the battalions were established in mid-2014, during the early stages of the War in Donbass, to combat the pro-Russian separatists and the forces of the Donetsk People's Republic, Luhansk People's Republic, the United Armed Forces of Novorossiya. 32 volunteer territorial defence battalions have been formed. In autumn 2014 most of the territorial defence battalions were reorganized as motorized infantry battlions of the Ukrainian Armed Forces. In March 2014 acting President of Ukraine Oleksandr Turchynov issued an order to create seven territorial defence battalions; these formations were subordinated to the Ministry of Defense. Battalions took their name from wherever most of their recruits were from.
17 March 2014 Ukraine began first stage of mobilization 18 March 2014 – 3rd Territorial Defence Battalion was created in Lviv Oblast 19 March 2014 – the Defence Regiment was created in Dnipropetrovsk 6th Territorial Defence Battalion was created in Ternopil Oblast 9th Territorial Defence Battalion was created in Vinnytsia Oblast 12 April 2014 – 10th Territorial Defence Battalion was created in Zhytomyr Oblast 23 April 2014 – 13th Territorial Defence Battalion was created in Chernihiv Oblast 24 April 2014 – 15th Territorial Defence Battalion was created in Sumy Oblast 17th Territorial Defence Battalion was created in Kirovohrad Oblast 26 April 2014 – 22nd Territorial Defence Battalion "Kharkiv" was created in Kharkiv Oblast 30 April 2014 Oleksandr Turchynov issued an order to create 27 territorial defence battalionsSince 30 April 2014 all territorial defence battalions have been part of the Armed Forces of Ukraine and fall under the General Staff of the Ukrainian Armed Forces and the governors of the oblasts in which they were created.
By law, every oblast in Ukraine should create its own territorial defence battalions. 6 May 2014 Ukraine began a second stage of mobilization. 19th Territorial Defence Battalion was created in Mykolaiv. The unit was first used in the Mykolaiv area setting up roadblocks to slow separatist entry into the region, however by July it had been deployed to Donbass in order to take a more active role in the ongoing War in Donbass aiding other volunteer battalions as well as the Armed Forces of Ukraine. 21st Territorial Defence Battalion was created in Kherson Oblast 24th Territorial Defence Battalion "Aidar" was created in Luhansk Oblast 25th Territorial Defence Battalion "Kyivska Rus" was created in Kiev Oblast 34th Territorial Defence Battalion "Batkivshchyna" was created in Kirovohrad Oblast. The battalion was named after the political party with the same name as part of its "Resistance movement". 22 July 2014 Ukraine began third stage of mobilisation 37th Territorial Defence Battalion was formed between 29 August 2014 and 8 September 2014 in Zaporizhia Oblast.
According to Zaporizhia Oblast Governor Valeriy Baranov the battalion will be the first of its kind to receive tanks. 40th Territorial Defence Battalion "Kryvbas" was formed in Dnipropetrovsk Oblast 41st Territorial Defence Battalion was formed in Chernihiv Oblast 42nd Territorial Defence Battalion was formed in Kirovohrad OblastDuring the opening stages of the war in Eastern Ukraine, the Ukrainian military and police forces were ineffective in separatist areas surrendering equipment or being overwhelmed in cities by large crowds of civilians. Federalist and pro-Russian insurgents gained large swaths of territory. Ukraine lost control of the Ukrainian–Russian border and this allowed time for a large inflow of insurgents and military supplies from Russia. By August 2014 over 5,600 volunteers had joined defence battalions across Ukraine and about 7,000 volunteers had joined by the end of September; the Russian Communist Party has pushed to label the battalions as terrorist organizations though they are directly subordinate to the Government of Ukraine and are legal government agencies of Ukraine.
Russian politicians have not pushed for declaring pro-Russian insurgents fighting in Ukraine as terrorists. In the 2014 Ukrainian parliamentary election several members of the battalions were elected into the Ukrainian parliament. On 10 November 2014 Stepan Poltorak, the Minister of Defence of Ukraine, ordered territorial defence battalions to reorganize as motorized infantry battalions; the battalions receive basic resources and weapons from the Interior Ministry or the Ministry of Defence. These resources soon proved to be inadequate and numerous groups have helped to equip the battalions; the best known volunteer groups are Self-defence of Maidan, which has its own warehouses in Melitopol and Kharkiv, Army SOS, an initiative of former Euromaidan activists. Volunteers provide things like: hygiene items, sleeping bags, night vision goggles and multicopters. 1st Territorial Defence Battalion "Volyn" 2nd Territorial Defence Battalion "Horyn" 3rd Territorial Defence Battalion "Volya" 4th Territorial Defence Battalion "Zakarpattia" 5th Territorial Defence Battalion "Prykarpattya" 6th Territorial Defence Battalion "Zbruch" 7th Territorial Defence Battalion 8th Territorial Defence Battalion 9th Territorial Defence Battalion "Vinnytsia" (Vinnytsia Ob
An electoral district, election district, or legislative district, called a voting district by the US Census is a territorial subdivision for electing members to a legislative body. Only voters who reside within the district are permitted to vote in an election held there. From a single district, a single member or multiple members might be chosen. Members might be chosen by a first-past-the-post system or a proportional representative system, or another voting method entirely. Members might be chosen through a direct election under universal suffrage, an indirect election, or another form of suffrage; the names for electoral districts vary across countries and for the office being elected. The term constituency is used to refer to an electoral district in British English, but it can refer to the body of eligible voters or all the residents of the represented area or only those who voted for a certain candidate; the terms precinct and election district are more common in American English. In Australia and New Zealand, electoral districts are called electorates, however elsewhere the term electorate refers to the body of voters.
In India electoral districts are referred to as "Nirvachan Kshetra" in Hindi, which can be translated to English as "electoral area" though the official English translation for the term is "constituency". The term "Nirvachan Kshetra" is used while referring to an electoral district in general irrespective of the legislature; when referring to a particular legislatorial constituency, it is referred to as "Kshetra" along with the name of the legislature, in Hindi. Electoral districts for municipal or other local bodies are called "wards". In Canada, districts are colloquially called ridings. Local electoral districts are sometimes called wards, a term which designates administrative subdivisions of a municipality. In local government in the Republic of Ireland voting districts are called "electoral areas". District magnitude is the number of representatives elected from a given district to the same legislative body. A single-member district has one representative. Voting systems that seek proportional representation inherently require multi-member districts, the larger the district magnitude the more proportional a system will tend to be Non-proportional systems may use multi-member districts, as in the House of Commons until 1950, Singapore's Group Representation Constituency, or the New Hampshire House of Representatives.
Under proportional representation systems, district magnitude is an important determinant of the makeup of the elected body. With a larger number of winners, candidates are able to represent proportionately smaller minorities; the geographic distribution of minorities affects their representation - an unpopular nationwide minority can still secure a seat if they are concentrated in a particular district. District magnitude can sometimes vary within the same system during an election. In the Republic of Ireland, for instance, national elections to Dáil Éireann are held using a combination of 3, 4, 5 member districts. In Hong Kong, the magnitude ranged from 3 to 5 in 1998, when the current electoral system was introduced for Legislative Council geographical constituency elections, will range from 5 to 9 in the forthcoming election in September 2012; the only democracies with one single nationwide electoral district and no other territorial correctors are Fiji, The Netherlands, Mozambique, South Africa and Serbia.
Main articles: Apportionment and RedistrictingApportionment is the process of allocating a number of representatives to different regions, such as states or provinces. Apportionment changes are accompanied by redistricting, the redrawing of electoral district boundaries to accommodate the new number of representatives; this redrawing is necessary under single-member district systems, as each new representative requires their own district. Multi-member systems, vary depending on other rules. Ireland, for example, redraws its electoral districts after every census while Belgium uses its existing administrative boundaries for electoral districts and instead modifies the number of representatives allotted to each. Israel and the Netherlands avoid the need for apportionment by electing legislators at-large. Apportionment is done on the basis of population. Seats in the United States House of Representatives, for instance, are reapportioned to individual states every 10 years following a census, with some states that have grown in population gaining seats.
By contrast, seats in the Cantonal Council of Zürich are reapportioned in every election based on the number of votes cast in each district, only made possible by use of multi-member districts, the House of Peoples of Bosnia and Herzegovina, by contrast, is apportioned without regard to population. Malapportionment occurs when voters are under- or over-represented due to variation in district population. Given the complexity of this process, softwa
BBC News is an operational business division of the British Broadcasting Corporation responsible for the gathering and broadcasting of news and current affairs. The department is the world's largest broadcast news organisation and generates about 120 hours of radio and television output each day, as well as online news coverage; the service maintains 50 foreign news bureaus with more than 250 correspondents around the world. Fran Unsworth has been Director of News and Current Affairs since January 2018; the department's annual budget is in excess of £350 million. BBC News' domestic and online news divisions are housed within the largest live newsroom in Europe, in Broadcasting House in central London. Parliamentary coverage is broadcast from studios in Millbank in London. Through the BBC English Regions, the BBC has regional centres across England, as well as national news centres in Northern Ireland and Wales. All nations and English regions produce their own local news programmes and other current affairs and sport programmes.
The BBC is a quasi-autonomous corporation authorised by Royal Charter, making it operationally independent of the government, who have no power to appoint or dismiss its director-general, required to report impartially. As with all major media outlets it has been accused of political bias from across the political spectrum, both within the UK and abroad; the British Broadcasting Company broadcast its first radio bulletin from radio station.2LO In 14 November 1922. Wishing to avoid competition, newspaper publishers persuaded the government to ban the BBC from broadcasting news before 7:00 pm, to force it to use wire service copy instead of reporting on its own. On Easter weekend in 1930, this reliance on newspaper wire services left the radio news service with no information to report after saying There is no news today. Piano music was played instead; the BBC gained the right to edit the copy and, in 1934, created its own news operation. However, it could not broadcast news before 6 PM until World War II.
Gaumont British and Movietone cinema newsreels had been broadcast on the TV service since 1936, with the BBC producing its own equivalent Television Newsreel programme from January 1948. A weekly Children's Newsreel was inaugurated on 23 April 1950, to around 350,000 receivers; the network began simulcasting its radio news on television in 1946, with a still picture of Big Ben. Televised bulletins began on 5 July 1954, broadcast from leased studios within Alexandra Palace in London; the public's interest in television and live events was stimulated by Elizabeth II's coronation in 1953. It is estimated that up to 27 million people viewed the programme in the UK, overtaking radio's audience of 12 million for the first time; those live pictures were fed from 21 cameras in central London to Alexandra Palace for transmission, on to other UK transmitters opened in time for the event. That year, there were around two million TV Licences held in the UK, rising to over three million the following year, four and a half million by 1955.
Television news, although physically separate from its radio counterpart, was still under radio news' control – correspondents provided reports for both outlets–and that first bulletin, shown on 5 July 1954 on the BBC television service and presented by Richard Baker, involved his providing narration off-screen while stills were shown. This was followed by the customary Television Newsreel with a recorded commentary by John Snagge, it was revealed that this had been due to producers fearing a newsreader with visible facial movements would distract the viewer from the story. On-screen newsreaders were introduced a year in 1955 – Kenneth Kendall, Robert Dougall, Richard Baker–three weeks before ITN's launch on 21 September 1955. Mainstream television production had started to move out of Alexandra Palace in 1950 to larger premises – at Lime Grove Studios in Shepherd's Bush, west London – taking Current Affairs with it, it was from here that the first Panorama, a new documentary programme, was transmitted on 11 November 1953, with Richard Dimbleby becoming anchor in 1955.
On 18 February 1957, the topical early-evening programme Tonight, hosted by Cliff Michelmore and designed to fill the airtime provided by the abolition of the Toddlers' Truce, was broadcast from Marconi's Viking Studio in St Mary Abbott's Place, Kensington – with the programme moving into a Lime Grove studio in 1960, where it maintained its production office. On 28 October 1957, the Today programme, a morning radio programme, was launched in central London on the Home Service. In 1958, Hugh Carleton Greene became head of Current Affairs, he set up a BBC study group whose findings, published in 1959, were critical of what the television news operation had become under his predecessor, Tahu Hole. The report proposed that the head of television news should take control, that the television service should have a proper newsroom of its own, with an editor-of-the-day. On 1 January 1960, Greene became Director-General and brought about big changes at BBC Television and BBC Television News. BBC Television News had been created in 1955, in response to the founding of ITN.
The changes made by Greene were aimed at making BBC reporting more similar to ITN, rated by study groups held by Greene. A newsroom was created at Alexandra Palace, television reporters were recruited and given the opportunity to write and voice their own scripts–without the "impossible burden" of having to cover stories for radio too. In 1987 thirty years John B
NBC News is the news division of the American broadcast television network NBC. The division operates under NBCUniversal Broadcast, Cable and News, a subsidiary of NBCUniversal, in turn a subsidiary of Comcast; the group's various operations report to the president of Noah Oppenheim. NBC News aired the first scheduled news program in American broadcast television history on February 21, 1940; the group's broadcasts are produced and aired from 30 Rockefeller Center, NBC's headquarters in New York City. The division presides over America's number-one-rated newscast, NBC Nightly News, the longest-running television series in American history, Meet The Press, the Sunday morning program of newsmakers interviews. NBC News offers 70 years of rare historic footage from the NBCUniversal Archives online. NBC News operates a 24-hour cable news network known as MSNBC, which includes the organization's flagship daytime news operation, MSNBC Live; the cable network shares editorial control with NBC News. In 2017, the organization entered into a partnership and purchased a 25% stake in Euronews, a European 24-hour news network.
The first scheduled, American television newscast in history was made by NBC News on February 21, 1940, anchored by Lowell Thomas, airing weeknights at 6:45 p.m. It was Lowell Thomas in front of a television camera while doing his NBC network radio broadcast, the television simulcast seen only in New York. In June 1940, NBC, through its flagship station in New York City, W2XBS operating on channel one, televised 30¼ hours of coverage of the Republican National Convention live and direct from Philadelphia; the station used a series of relays from Philadelphia to New York and on to upper New York State, for rebroadcast on W2XB in Schenectady, making this among the first "network" programs of NBC Television. Due to wartime and technical restrictions, there were no live telecasts of the 1944 conventions, although films of the events were shown over WNBT the next day. About this time, there were irregularly scheduled, quasi-network newscasts originating from NBC's WNBT in New York City and fed to WPTZ in Philadelphia and WRGB in Schenectady, NY, such as Esso sponsored news features a well as The War As It Happens in the final days of World War II, another irregularly scheduled NBC television newsreel program, seen in New York and Schenectady on the few television sets which existed at the time.
After the war, NBC Television Newsreel aired. In 1948, when sponsored by Camel Cigarettes, NBC Television Newsreel was renamed Camel Newsreel Theatre and when John Cameron Swayze was added as an on-camera anchor in 1949, the program was renamed Camel News Caravan. In 1948, NBC teamed up with Life magazine to provide election night coverage of President Harry S. Truman's surprising victory over New York governor Thomas E. Dewey; the television audience was small. The following year, the Camel News Caravan, anchored by John Cameron Swayze, debuted on NBC. Lacking the graphics and technology of years, it nonetheless contained many of the elements of modern newscasts. NBC hired its own film crews and in the program's early years, it dominated CBS's competing program, which did not hire its own film crews until 1953.. In 1950, David Brinkley began serving as the program's Washington correspondent, but attracted little attention outside the network until paired with Chet Huntley in 1956. In 1955, the Camel News Caravan fell behind CBS's Douglas Edwards with the News, Swayze lost the tepid support of NBC executives.
The following year, NBC replaced the program with the Huntley-Brinkley Report. Beginning in 1951, NBC News was managed by director of news Bill McAndrew, who reported to vice president of news and public affairs J. Davidson Taylor. Television assumed an prominent role in American family life in the late 1950s, NBC News was called television's "champion of news coverage." NBC president Robert Kintner provided the news division with ample amounts of both financial resources and air time. In 1956, the network paired anchors Chet Huntley and David Brinkley and the two became celebrities, supported by reporters including John Chancellor, Frank McGee, Edwin Newman, Sander Vanocur, Nancy Dickerson, Tom Pettit, Ray Scherer. Created by producer Reuven Frank, NBC's The Huntley–Brinkley Report had its debut on October 29, 1956. During much of its 14-year run, it exceeded the viewership levels of its CBS News competition, anchored by Douglas Edwards and, beginning in April 1962, by Walter Cronkite. NBC's vice president of news and public affairs, J. Davidson Taylor, was a Southerner who, with producer Reuven Frank, was determined that NBC would lead television's coverage of the civil rights movement.
In 1955, NBC provided national coverage of Rev. Martin Luther King, Jr.'s leadership of the bus boycott in Montgomery, airing reports from Frank McGee news director of NBC's Montgomery affiliate WSFA-TV, who would join the network. A year John Chancellor's coverage of the admission of black students to Central High School in Little Rock, Arkansas was the first occasion when the key news story came from television rather than print and prompted a prominent U. S. senator to observe "When I think of Little Rock, I think of John Chancellor." Other reporters who covered the movement for the network included Sander Vanocur, Herbert Kaplow, Charles Quinn, Richard Valeriani, hit with an ax handle
Ukraine, sometimes called the Ukraine, is a country in Eastern Europe. Excluding Crimea, Ukraine has a population of about 42.5 million, making it the 32nd most populous country in the world. Its capital and largest city is Kiev. Ukrainian is the official language and its alphabet is Cyrillic; the dominant religions in the country are Greek Catholicism. Ukraine is in a territorial dispute with Russia over the Crimean Peninsula, which Russia annexed in 2014. Including Crimea, Ukraine has an area of 603,628 km2, making it the largest country within Europe and the 46th largest country in the world; the territory of modern Ukraine has been inhabited since 32,000 BC. During the Middle Ages, the area was a key centre of East Slavic culture, with the powerful state of Kievan Rus' forming the basis of Ukrainian identity. Following its fragmentation in the 13th century, the territory was contested and divided by a variety of powers, including Lithuania, Austria-Hungary, the Ottoman Empire and Russia. A Cossack republic emerged and prospered during the 17th and 18th centuries, but its territory was split between Poland and the Russian Empire, merged into the Russian-dominated Soviet Union in the late 1940s as the Ukrainian Soviet Socialist Republic.
In 1991 Ukraine gained its independence from the Soviet Union in the aftermath of its dissolution at the end of the Cold War. Before its independence, Ukraine was referred to in English as "The Ukraine", but most sources have since moved to drop "the" from the name of Ukraine in all uses. Following its independence, Ukraine declared itself a neutral state. In 2013, after the government of President Viktor Yanukovych had decided to suspend the Ukraine-European Union Association Agreement and seek closer economic ties with Russia, a several-months-long wave of demonstrations and protests known as the Euromaidan began, which escalated into the 2014 Ukrainian revolution that led to the overthrow of Yanukovych and the establishment of a new government; these events formed the background for the annexation of Crimea by Russia in March 2014, the War in Donbass in April 2014. On 1 January 2016, Ukraine applied the economic component of the Deep and Comprehensive Free Trade Area with the European Union.
Ukraine is ranks 88th on the Human Development Index. As of 2018, Ukraine has the second lowest GDP per capita in Europe. At US$40, it has the lowest median wealth per adult in the world, it suffers from a high poverty rate and severe corruption. However, because of its extensive fertile farmlands, Ukraine is one of the world's largest grain exporters. Ukraine maintains the second-largest military in Europe after that of Russia; the country is home to a multi-ethnic population, 77.8 percent of whom are Ukrainians, followed by a large Russian minority, as well as Georgians, Belarusians, Crimean Tatars, Jews and Hungarians. Ukraine is a unitary republic under a semi-presidential system with separate powers: legislative and judicial branches; the country is a member of the United Nations, the Council of Europe, the OSCE, the GUAM organization, one of the founding states of the Commonwealth of Independent States. There are different hypotheses as to the etymology of the name Ukraine. According to the older widespread hypothesis, it means "borderland", while some more recent linguistic studies claim a different meaning: "homeland" or "region, country"."The Ukraine" used to be the usual form in English, but since the Declaration of Independence of Ukraine, "the Ukraine" has become less common in the English-speaking world, style-guides recommend not using the definite article.
"The Ukraine" now implies disregard for the country's sovereignty, according to U. S. ambassador William Taylor. The Ukrainian position is that the usage of "'The Ukraine' is incorrect both grammatically and politically." Neanderthal settlement in Ukraine is seen in the Molodova archaeological sites which include a mammoth bone dwelling. The territory is considered to be the location for the human domestication of the horse. Modern human settlement in Ukraine and its vicinity dates back to 32,000 BC, with evidence of the Gravettian culture in the Crimean Mountains. By 4,500 BC, the Neolithic Cucuteni–Trypillia culture flourished in wide areas of modern Ukraine including Trypillia and the entire Dnieper-Dniester region. During the Iron Age, the land was inhabited by Cimmerians and Sarmatians. Between 700 BC and 200 BC it was Scythia. Beginning in the sixth century BC, colonies of Ancient Greece, Ancient Rome and the Byzantine Empire, such as Tyras and Chersonesus, were founded on the northeastern shore of the Black Sea.
These colonies thrived well into the 6th century AD. The Goths stayed in the area but came under the sway of the Huns from the 370s AD. In the 7th century AD, the territory of eastern Ukraine was the centre of Old Great Bulgaria. At the end of the century, the majority of Bulgar tribes migrated in different directions, the Khazars took over much of the land. In the 5th and 6th centuries, the Antes were located in the territory of; the Antes were the ancestors of Ukrainians: White Croats, Polans, Dulebes and Tiverians. Migrations from Ukraine throughout the Balkans established many Southern Slavic nations. Northern migrations, reaching to the Ilmen l
The Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine simply Verkhovna Rada or just Rada, is the unicameral parliament of Ukraine. The Verkhovna Rada is composed of 450 deputies; the Verkhovna Rada meets in the Verkhovna Rada building in Ukraine's capital Kiev. The Verkhovna Rada was transformed out of the system of republican representative body known in the Soviet Union as Supreme Soviet, first established back in 1938 as a type of legislature of the Ukrainian SSR after the reorganization of the Central Executive Committee of the Ukrainian SSR; the 12th convocation of the Supreme Council of the Ukrainian SSR issued the Declaration of Independence of Ukraine, introduced elements of a market economy and political liberalization, changed the numeration of its sessions, proclaiming itself the first convocation of the "Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine". The current parliament is the eighth convocation; because of the War in Donbass and the unilateral annexation of Crimea by Russia, elections for the constituencies situated in Donbass and Crimea were not held in the 2014 Ukrainian parliamentary election.
In elections to the Verkhovna Rada, a mixed voting system is used. 50% of seats are distributed under party lists with a 5% election threshold and 50% through first-past-the-post in single-member constituencies. The method of 50/50 mixed elections was used in the 2012 elections; the name Rada means "council", "rede". The institution originated in the time of Kievan Rus', represented a council of boyars and of higher clergy. In the 17th and 18th centuries the Dnieper Cossacks used the term to refer to the meetings where major decisions were made; the Ukrainian People's Republic between 17 March 1917 and 29 April 1918 had a Central Rada. The West Ukrainian People's Republic and the Ukrainian government-in-exile each had a UNRada. Verkhovna, the feminine form of the adjective "верховний" meaning supreme, derives from the Ukrainian word "верх" meaning "top". Another name, used less is the Parliament of Ukraine. Central Rada in 1917–18 Ukrainian National Rada in 1918 Labour Congress of Ukraine in 1919 Rada of Republic in 1921 The Supreme Council of the Ukrainian SSR replaced the Central Executive Committee of the Ukrainian SSR, elected by All-Ukrainian Congress of Soviets and was a type of legislative authority of Soviet Ukraine according to the 1937 Constitution of the Ukrainian SSR.
The All-Ukrainian Congress of Soviets had been renamed the Supreme Council in 1927. The Congress of Soviets was initiated by the Central Executive Committee of Ukraine; the last chairman of the committee was Hryhoriy Petrovsky. The first elections to the Supreme Council of the Ukrainian SSR took place on 26 June 1938; the first session of the parliament took place in Kiev from 25 July through to 28 July 1938. The first Chairman of the council was Mykhailo Burmystenko who died during World War II. In 1938, a presidium of the council was created, led by Leonid Korniyets. During the war the presidium was evacuated to the city of Saratov in the Russian SFSR. On 29 June 1943, the presidium issued an order postponing elections for the new convocation for one year while extending the first convocation. On 8 January 1944, the Cabinet of Ministers of the Ukrainian SSR in agreement with the Communist Party decided to relocate the Presidium of the Supreme Council from Kharkiv to Kiev. New elections were scheduled for 9 February 1947 for the Council.
Until 24 August 1991 Verkhovna Rada kept the name Supreme Council of the Ukrainian SSR. The first free elections to the Verkhovna Rada and local councils of people's deputies were held on 4 March 1990. Although the Communist Party still remained in control, a "Democratic Bloc" was formed by numerous parties, including People's Movement of Ukraine, Helsinki Watch Committee of Ukraine, Party of Greens of Ukraine, many others; the twelfth convocation of the Supreme Council of the Ukrainian SSR issued the Declaration of State Sovereignty of Ukraine on 16 July 1990, declared Ukrainian independence on 24 August 1991, at 6 p.m. local time. At the time, the Chairman of the Verkhovna Rada was Leonid Kravchuk; the Act of Ukrainian Independence was overwhelmingly supported in a national referendum held on 1 December 1991. On 12 September 1991 the parliament adopted the law "On Legal Succession of Ukraine". Thus, the VR became the Supreme Council of Ukraine; the Constitution of Ukraine was adopted by the thirteenth convocation of the Verkhovna Rada on 28 June 1996, at 9 a.m. local time.
The parliament's fourteenth convocation changed the numbering of the convocations proclaiming itself the third convocation of the Verkhovna Rada. After the Orange Revolution, constitutional amendments were adopted in December 2004, by the fourth convocation of the Verkhovna Rada. On 1 October 2010 the Constitutional Court of Ukraine overturned the 2004 Amendments, considering them unconstitutional. On 21 February 2014, parliament reinstated the December 2004 amendments to the constitution. In 2017 and 2018 the website of the Verkovna Rada was the most popular among all websites of the parliaments of UN member states; the Verkhovna Rada meets in a neo-c