Kiev or Kyiv is the capital and most populous city of Ukraine, located in the north-central part of the country on the Dnieper. The population in July 2015 was 2,887,974. Kiev is an important industrial, scientific and cultural center of Eastern Europe, it is home to many high-tech industries, higher education institutions, world-famous historical landmarks. The city has an extensive infrastructure and developed system of public transport, including the Kiev Metro; the city's name is said to derive from the name of one of its four legendary founders. During its history, one of the oldest cities in Eastern Europe, passed through several stages of great prominence and relative obscurity; the city existed as a commercial centre as early as the 5th century. A Slavic settlement on the great trade route between Scandinavia and Constantinople, Kiev was a tributary of the Khazars, until its capture by the Varangians in the mid-9th century. Under Varangian rule, the city became a capital of the first East Slavic state.
Destroyed during the Mongol invasions in 1240, the city lost most of its influence for the centuries to come. It was a provincial capital of marginal importance in the outskirts of the territories controlled by its powerful neighbours; the city prospered again during the Russian Empire's Industrial Revolution in the late 19th century. In 1917, after the Ukrainian National Republic declared independence from the Russian Empire, Kiev became its capital. From 1921 onwards Kiev was a city of the Ukrainian Soviet Socialist Republic, proclaimed by the Red Army, from 1934, Kiev was its capital. During World War II, the city again suffered significant damage, but recovered in the post-war years, remaining the third largest city of the Soviet Union. Following the collapse of the Soviet Union and Ukrainian independence in 1991, Kiev remained the capital of Ukraine and experienced a steady migration influx of ethnic Ukrainians from other regions of the country. During the country's transformation to a market economy and electoral democracy, Kiev has continued to be Ukraine's largest and richest city.
Kiev's armament-dependent industrial output fell after the Soviet collapse, adversely affecting science and technology. But new sectors of the economy such as services and finance facilitated Kiev's growth in salaries and investment, as well as providing continuous funding for the development of housing and urban infrastructure. Kiev emerged as the most pro-Western region of Ukraine where parties advocating tighter integration with the European Union dominate during elections. Kiev is the traditional and most used English name for the city; the Ukrainian government however uses Kyiv as the mandatory romanization where legislative and official acts are translated into English. As a prominent city with a long history, its English name was subject to gradual evolution; the early English spelling was derived from Old East Slavic form Kyjevŭ. The name is associated with that of the legendary eponymous founder of the city. Early English sources use various names, including Kiou, Kiew, Kiovia. On one of the oldest English maps of the region, Moscoviae et Tartariae published by Ortelius the name of the city is spelled Kiou.
On the 1650 map by Guillaume de Beauplan, the name of the city is Kiiow, the region was named Kÿowia. In the book Travels, by Joseph Marshall, the city is referred to as Kiovia; the form Kiev is based on Russian orthography and pronunciation, during a time when Kiev was in the Russian Empire. In English, Kiev was used in print as early as in 1804 in the John Cary's "New map of Europe, from the latest authorities" in "Cary's new universal atlas" published in London; the English travelogue titled New Russia: Journey from Riga to the Crimea by way of Kiev, by Mary Holderness was published in 1823. By 1883, the Oxford English Dictionary included Kiev in a quotation. Kyiv is the romanized version of the name of the city used in modern Ukrainian. Following independence in 1991, the Ukrainian government introduced the national rules for transliteration of geographic names from Ukrainian into English. According to the rules, the Ukrainian Київ transliterates into Kyiv; this has established the use of the spelling Kyiv in all official documents issued by the governmental authorities since October 1995.
The spelling is used by the United Nations, European Union, all English-speaking foreign diplomatic missions, several international organizations, Encarta encyclopedia, by some media in Ukraine. In October 2006, the United States Board on Geographic Names unanimously voted to change its standard transliteration to Kyiv, effective for the entire U. S. government, although'Kiev' remains the BGN conventional name for this city. The alternate romanizations Kyyiv and Kyjiv are in use in English-language atlases. Many major English-language news sources like the BBC, The New York Times continue to prefer Kiev, but others have adopted Kyiv in their style guides, including The Economist and The Guardian. Kiev, one of the oldest cities of Eastern Europe, played a pivotal role in the development of the medieval East Slavic civilization as well as in the modern Ukrainian nation. Scholars debate as to period of the foundation of the city: some date the founding to the late 9th century, other historians
Hero of the Soviet Union
The title Hero of the Soviet Union was the highest distinction in the Soviet Union, awarded or collectively for heroic feats in service to the Soviet state and society. The award was established on April 1934, by the Central Executive Committee of the Soviet Union; the first recipients of the title received only the Order of Lenin, the highest Soviet award, along with a certificate describing the heroic deed from the Presidium of the Supreme Soviet of the USSR. Because the Order of Lenin could be awarded for deeds not qualifying for the title of hero, to distinguish heroes from other Order of Lenin holders, the Gold Star medal was introduced on August 1, 1939. Earlier heroes were retroactively eligible for these items. A hero could be awarded the title again for a subsequent heroic feat with an additional Gold Star medal and certificate. An additional Order of Lenin was not given until 1973; the practice of awarding the title multiple times was abolished by the Supreme Soviet of the USSR in 1988 during perestroika.
Forty-four foreign citizens were awarded the title. The title was given posthumously, though without the actual Gold Star medal given; the title could be revoked only by the Presidium of the Supreme Soviet. As the Highest Honor of the Soviet Union. Individuals who received the award were entitled to special privileges; these include: A pension with survivor benefits in the event of the death of the title holder. First priority on the housing list with 50% rent reduction, tax exempt and an additional 45 square metres in living space. Annual round-trip first class airline ticket Free bus transportation Free annual visit to sanitarium or rest home Medical benefits Entertainment benefits In total, during the existence of the USSR, the title of Hero of the Soviet Union was awarded to 12,777 people, including twice – 154, three times – 3 and four – 2. Ninety-five women were awarded the title. Among the Heroes of the Soviet Union, 44 people are citizens of foreign states; the great majority of them received it during World War II.
Eighty-five people were awarded the title for actions related to the Soviet-Afghan War, which lasted from 1979 until 1989. The first recipients of the award were the pilots Anatoly Liapidevsky, Sigizmund Levanevsky, Vasily Molokov, Mavriky Slepnyov, Nikolai Kamanin, Ivan Doronin, Mikhail Vodopianov, who participated in the successful aerial search and rescue of the crew of the steamship Cheliuskin, which sank in Arctic waters, crushed by ice fields, on February 13, 1934. Valentina Grizodubova, a female pilot, was the first woman to become a Hero of the Soviet Union for her international women's record for a straight-line distance flight. Zoya Kosmodemyanskaya, a Soviet partisan, was the first woman to become a Hero of the Soviet Union during World War II, posthumously. In addition, 101 people received the award twice. A second Hero title, either Hero of the Soviet Union or Hero of Socialist Labour entitled the recipient to have a bronze bust of his or her likeness with a commemorative inscription erected in his or her hometown.
Two famous Soviet fighter pilots, Aleksandr Pokryshkin and Ivan Kozhedub were three times Heroes of the Soviet Union. A third award entitled the recipient to have his/her bronze bust erected on a columnar pedestal in Moscow, near the Palace of the Soviets, but the Palace was never built. After his release from serving a 20-year sentence in a Mexican prison for the assassination of Leon Trotsky, Ramon Mercader moved to the Soviet Union in 1961 and was awarded the Hero of the Soviet Union medal from KGB head Alexander Shelepin; the only individuals to receive the title four times were Leonid Brezhnev. The original statute of the Hero of the Soviet Union, did not provide for a fourth title. Both Zhukov and Brezhnev received their fourth titles under controversial circumstances contrary to the statute, which remained unchanged until the award was abolished in 1991. Zhukov was awarded a fourth time "for his large accomplishments" on the occasion of his 60th birthday on December 1, 1956. There is some speculation that Zhukov's fourth Hero medal was for his participation in the arrest of Beria in 1953, but this was not entered in the records.
Brezhnev's four awards further eroded the prestige of the award because they were all birthday gifts, on the occasions of his 60th, 70th, 72nd and 75th birthdays. Such practices halted in 1988 due to a decision of the Supreme Soviet of the USSR, which formally ended it. By the 1970s, the award had been somewhat devalued. Important political and military persons had been awarded it on the occasions of their anniversaries rather than for any immediate heroic activity. All Soviet cosmonauts, starting from Yuri Gagarin, as well as foreign citizens who participated in the Soviet space program as cosmonauts, received Hero award for each flight. Apart from individuals, the title was awarded to twelve cities as well as the fortress of Brest for collective heroism during the War; the last recipient of the title "Hero of the Soviet Union" was a Soviet diver, Captain of the 3rd rank Leonid Mikhailovich Solodkov on December 24, 1991 for his leadership and participation in a series of unprecedented extreme depth diving experiments.
Following the collapse of the
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
Kopachi was a village near Chernobyl, just south-west of the Pripyat River Basin. After the Chernobyl disaster in 1986 the village was contaminated by fallout and subsequently evacuated and is now within the Chernobyl Exclusion Zone. After Kopachi village was evacuated by the authorities, all the houses were torn down and buried, as an experiment; this village was the only village suffering this fate as a result of the Chernobyl disaster. The only traces left of the village today is a series of mounds and a small number of surviving trees which are not part of the local native flora; each mound contains the remains of one house and is topped by a sign with the international radiation symbol. The Chernobyl disaster contaminated Kopachi with high-level radioactive fallout. A kindergarten and one other brick building are the only architectural structures that remain standing, all other buildings were bulldozed; the government did not recognize the fact that these highly-contaminated buildings and houses would seep radioactive isotopes into the water table.
Burying the buildings drove radio-toxins deeper into the environment. The soil and water surrounding the former village remain contaminated with radioactive materials including plutonium, strontium-90, caesium-137. Other villages in the exclusion zone faced a similar fate; the village, located few km south of the Chernobyl Plant and close to its cooling pond, lies on the road between Pripyat and Chernobyl. Other near settlements are the villages of Yaniv. Chernobyl Exclusion Zone Media related to Kopachi at Wikimedia Commons
Volodymyr Pavlovych Pravyk was a Soviet firefighter who died from radiation burns suffered in the Chernobyl disaster. He was posthumously awarded the Hero of the Soviet Union, the Order of Lenin, the Ukrainian Star For Courage, which became the Order For Courage, he was laid to rest at Mitinskoe Cemetery in Moscow along with 27 other firefighters who died in the Chernobyl disaster. He is thought to be the firefighter that when experiencing massive amounts of radiation, had his eye color change from brown to blue
The Chernobyl disaster referred to as the Chernobyl accident, was a catastrophic nuclear accident occurred on 25–26 April 1986 in the No. 4 nuclear reactor at the Chernobyl Nuclear Power Plant, near the now-abandoned town of Pripyat, in northern Soviet Ukraine. The accident occurred during a late-night safety test which simulated a station blackout power-failure, in the course of which safety systems were intentionally turned off. A combination of inherent reactor design flaws and the reactor operators arranging the core in a manner contrary to the checklist for the test resulted in uncontrolled reaction conditions. Water flashed into steam generating a destructive steam explosion and a subsequent open-air graphite fire; this fire produced considerable updrafts for about nine days. These lofted plumes of fission products into the atmosphere; the estimated radioactive inventory, released during this hot fire phase equaled in magnitude the airborne fission products released in the initial destructive explosion.
This radioactive material precipitated onto parts of other European countries. During the accident, steam-blast effects caused two deaths within the facility: one after the explosion, the other compounded by a lethal dose of radiation. Over the coming days and weeks, 134 servicemen were hospitalized with acute radiation syndrome, of which 28 firemen and employees died in the days-to-months afterward. Additionally fourteen radiation induced cancer deaths among this group of 134 hospitalized survivors were to follow within the next ten years. Among the wider population, an excess of 15 childhood thyroid cancer deaths were documented as of 2011, it will take further time and investigation to definitively determine the elevated relative risk of cancer among the surviving employees, those that were hospitalized with ARS, the population at large. The Chernobyl accident is considered the most disastrous nuclear power plant accident in history, both in terms of cost and casualties, it is one of only two nuclear energy accidents classified as a level 7 event on the International Nuclear Event Scale, the other being the Fukushima disaster in Japan in 2011.
The struggle to safeguard against scenarios that were perceived as having the potential for greater catastrophe, together with decontamination efforts of the surroundings involved over 500,000 workers and cost an estimated 18 billion rubles. The remains of the No. 4 reactor building were enclosed in a large cover, named the "Object Shelter" known as "sarcophagus". The purpose of the structure was to reduce the spread of the remaining radioactive dust and debris from the wreckage, thus limiting radioactive contamination, the protection of the wreckage from further weathering; the sarcophagus was finished in December 1986 at a time when what was left of the reactor was entering the cold shutdown phase. The enclosure was not intended as a radiation shield, but was built as occupational safety for the crews of the other undamaged reactors at the power station, with No. 3 continuing to produce electricity up into 2000. The accident motivated safety upgrades on all remaining Soviet-designed RBMK reactors, the same type as Chernobyl No.
4, of which ten continue to power electric grids as of 2019. The disaster began during a systems test on 26 April 1986 at reactor 4 of the Chernobyl plant near Pripyat and in proximity to the administrative border with Belarus and the Dnieper River. There was a unexpected power surge; when operators attempted an emergency shutdown, a much larger spike in power output occurred. This second spike led to a series of steam explosions; these events exposed the graphite moderator of the reactor to air. For the next week, the resulting fire sent long plumes of radioactive fallout into the atmosphere over an extensive geographical area, including Pripyat; the plumes drifted over large parts of Europe. According to official post-Soviet data, about 60% of the fallout landed in Belarus. Thirty-six hours after the accident, Soviet officials enacted a 10-kilometre exclusion zone, which resulted in the rapid evacuation of 49,000 people from Pripyat, the nearest large population centre. Although not communicated at the time, an immediate evacuation of the town following the accident was not advisable as the road leading out of the town had heavy nuclear fallout hotspots deposited on it.
The town itself was comparatively safe due to the favourable wind direction. Until the winds began to change direction, shelter in place was considered the best safety measure for the town. During the accident the wind changed direction; as plumes and subsequent fallout continued to be generated, the evacuation zone was increased from 10 to 30 km about one week after the accident. A further 68,000 persons were evacuated, including from the town of Chernobyl itself; the surveying and detection of isolated fallout hotspots outside this zone over the following year resulted in 135,000 long-term evacuees in total agreeing to be moved. The near tripling in the total number of permanently resettled persons between 1986 and 2000 from the most contaminated areas to 350,000 is regarded as political in nature, with the majority of the rest evacuated in an effort to redeem loss in trust in the government. Many thousands of these evacuees would have been "better off staying home." Risk analysis