Red Square is a city square in Moscow, Russia. It separates the Kremlin, the former royal citadel and now the official residence of the President of Russia, from a historic merchant quarter known as Kitai-gorod. Red Square is considered to be the central square of Moscow since the city's major streets, which connect to Russia's major highways, originate in the square; the name Red Square originates neither from the pigment of the surrounding bricks nor from the link between the colour red and communism. Rather, the name came about because the Russian word красная, which means "red" is related to the word красивая meaning "beautiful," was applied to a small area between St. Basil's Cathedral, the Spassky Tower of the Kremlin, the herald's platform called Lobnoe Mesto, Tsar Alexei Mikhailovich extended the name to the entire square, called Pozhar, or "burnt-out place", in reference to the fact that several buildings had to be burned down to make place for the square. Several ancient Russian towns, such as Suzdal and Pereslavl-Zalessky, have their main square named Krasnaya ploshchad.
The rich history of Red Square is reflected in many paintings by Vasily Surikov, Konstantin Yuon and others. The square was meant to serve as Moscow's main marketplace, it was the site of various public ceremonies and proclamations, a coronation for Russia's Tsars would take place. The square has been built up since that point and has been used for official ceremonies by all Russian governments since it was established; the East side of the Kremlin triangle, lying adjacent to Red Square and situated between the rivers Moskva and the now underground Neglinnaya River was deemed the most vulnerable side of the Kremlin to attack, since it was neither protected by the rivers, nor any other natural barriers, as the other sides were. Therefore, the Kremlin wall was built to its greatest height on this side, the Italian architects involved in the building of these fortifications convinced Ivan the Great to clear the area outside of the walls to create a field for shooting; the relevant decrees were issued in 1493 and 1495.
They called for the demolition of all buildings within 110 sazhens of the wall. From 1508 to 1516, the Italian architect Aloisio the New arranged for the construction of a moat in front of the Eastern wall, which would connect the Moskva and Neglinnaya and be filled in with water from Neglinnaya; this moat, known as the Alevizov moat having a length of 541 metres, width of 36 metres, a depth of 9.5–13 m was lined with limestone and, in 1533, fenced on both sides with low, 4‑metre thick cogged brick walls. Three square gates existed on this side of the wall, which in the 17th century, were known as: Konstantino-Eleninsky, Nikolsky; the last two are directly opposite Red Square, while the Konstantino-Elenensky gate was located behind Saint Basil's Cathedral. In the early 19th century, the Arch of Konstantino-Elenensky gate was paved with bricks, but the Spassky Gate was the main front gate of the Kremlin and used for royal entrances. From this gate and stone bridges stretched across the moat. Books were sold on this bridge and stone platforms were built nearby for guns – "raskats".
The Tsar Cannon was located on the platform of the Lobnoye mesto. The square was called Veliky Torg or Torg Troitskaya by the name of the small Troitskaya Church, burnt down in the great fire during the Tatar invasion in 1571. After that, the square held the name Pozhar, which means "burnt", it was not until 1661 -- 62. Red Square was the landing trade centre for Moscow. Ivan the Great decreed that trade should only be conducted from person to person, but in time, these rules were relaxed and permanent market buildings began appearing on the square. After a fire in 1547, Ivan the Terrible reorganised the lines of wooden shops on the Eastern side into market lines; the streets Ilyinka and Varvarka were divided into the Upper lines, Middle lines and Bottom lines, although Bottom Lines were in Zaryadye). After a few years, the Cathedral of Intercession of the Virgin known as Saint Basil's Cathedral, was built on the moat under the rule of Ivan IV; this was the first building. In 1595, the wooden market lines were replaced with stone.
By that time, a brick platform for the proclamation of the tsar's edicts, known as Lobnoye Mesto, had been constructed. Red Square was considered a sacred place. Various festive processions were held there, during Palm Sunday, the famous "procession on a donkey" was arranged, in which the patriarch, sitting on a donkey, accompanied by the tsar and the people went out of Saint Basil's Cathedral in the Kremlin. During the expulsion of Poles from Moscow in 1612, Prince Dmitry Pozharsky entered the Kremlin through the square. In memory of this event, he built the Kazan Cathedral – in honour of the Kazan Icon of the Mother of God, followed his army in a campaign. At the same time, Spasskaya tower received contemporary tent roofs; this was done on the proposal and the draught of Christopher Galloway from Scotland, summoned to design the new tower's clock and suggeste
Vladimir Vladimirovich Putin is a Russian politician and former intelligence officer serving as President of Russia since 2012 holding the position from 2000 until 2008. In between his presidential terms he was the Prime Minister of Russia under his close associate Dmitry Medvedev. Putin was born in Leningrad during the Soviet Union, he studied law at Leningrad State University, graduating in 1975. Putin was a KGB foreign intelligence officer for 16 years, rising to the rank of Lieutenant Colonel before resigning in 1991 to enter politics in Saint Petersburg, he moved to Moscow in 1996 and joined President Boris Yeltsin's administration, rising through the ranks and becoming Acting President on 31 December 1999, when Yeltsin resigned. During his first presidency, the Russian economy grew for eight straight years, GDP measured in purchasing power increased by 72%; the growth was a result of the 2000s commodities boom, recovery from the post-Communist depression and financial crises, prudent economic and fiscal policies.
In September 2011, Putin announced. He won the March 2012 presidential election with 64% of the vote. Falling oil prices coupled with international sanctions imposed at the beginning of 2014 after Russia's annexation of Crimea and military intervention in Eastern Ukraine led to GDP shrinking by 3.7% in 2015, though the Russian economy rebounded in 2016 with 0.3% GDP growth and the recession ended. Putin gained 76% of the March 2018 presidential vote and was re-elected for a six-year term that will end in 2024. Under Putin's leadership, Russia has scored poorly in Transparency International's Corruption Perceptions Index and experienced democratic backsliding according to both the Economist Intelligence Unit's Democracy Index and Freedom House's Freedom in the World index. Experts do not consider Russia to be a democracy, citing the lack of free and fair elections and jailing of opponents, curtailed press freedom. Human rights organizations and activists have accused Putin of persecuting political critics and activists, as well as ordering them tortured or assassinated.
Officials of the United States government have accused him of leading an interference program against Hillary Clinton in support of Donald Trump during the U. S. presidential election in 2016, an allegation which both Trump and Putin have denied and criticized. Vladimir Vladimirovich Putin was born on 7 October 1952 in Leningrad, Russian SFSR, Soviet Union, the youngest of three children of Vladimir Spiridonovich Putin and Maria Ivanovna Putina, his birth was preceded by the death of two brothers and Albert, born in the mid-1930s. Albert died in infancy and Viktor died of diphtheria during the Siege of Leningrad in World War II. Putin's mother was a factory worker and his father was a conscript in the Soviet Navy, serving in the submarine fleet in the early 1930s. Early in World War II, his father served in the destruction battalion of the NKVD, he was transferred to the regular army and was wounded in 1942. Putin's maternal grandmother was killed by the German occupiers of Tver region in 1941, his maternal uncles disappeared at the war front.
On 1 September 1960, Putin started near his home. He was one of a few in the class of 45 pupils, not yet a member of the Young Pioneer organization. At age 12, he began to practice judo, he is a Judo black belt and national master of sports in Sambo. He wished to emulate the intelligence officers portrayed in Soviet cinema. Putin speaks German fluently. Putin studied Law at the Leningrad State University in 1970 and graduated in 1975, his thesis was on "The Most Favored Nation Trading Principle in International Law". While there, he was required to join the Communist Party of the Soviet Union and remained a member until December 1991. Putin met Anatoly Sobchak, an assistant professor who taught business law, was co-author of the russian constitution, who would be influential in Putin's career. In 1975, Putin trained at the 401st KGB school in Okhta, Leningrad. After training, he worked in the Second Chief Directorate, before he was transferred to the First Chief Directorate, where he monitored foreigners and consular officials in Leningrad.
In September 1984, Putin was sent to Moscow for further training at the Yuri Andropov Red Banner Institute. From 1985 to 1990, he served in East Germany, using a cover identity as a translator. Masha Gessen, a Russian-American who has authored a biography about Putin claims, "Putin and his colleagues were reduced to collecting press clippings, thus contributing to the mountains of useless information produced by the KGB." According to Putin's official biography, during the fall of the Berlin Wall that began on 9 November 1989, he burned KGB files to prevent demonstrators from obtaining them. After the collapse of the Communist East German government, Putin returned to Leningrad in early 1990, where he worked for about three months with the International Affairs section of Leningrad State University, reporting to Vice-Rector Yuriy Molchanov. There, he looked for new KGB recruits, watched the student body, renewed his friendship with his former professor, Anatoly Sobchak, soon to be the Mayor of Leningrad.
National Assembly (Serbia)
The National Assembly is the unicameral legislature of Serbia. The assembly is composed on 4 years term; the assembly elects a president. The current president of the national assembly is Maja Gojković since 23 April 2014; the National Assembly exercise supreme legislative power. It adopts and amends the Constitution, elects Government and dismisses Constitutional Court judges, president of the Supreme Court of Cassation, Governor of the National Bank of Serbia and other state officials. All decisions are made by majority vote of deputies at the session at which a majority of deputies are present, except for amending the Constitution, when a two thirds majority is needed; the assembly convenes in the House of the National Assembly in Belgrade. The competencies the National Assembly are defined by the Constitution of Serbia, articles 98-110: adopts and amends the Constitution. Elects the Government, supervises its work and decides on expiry of term of office of the government and ministers. Performs other functions stipulated by the Law.
Parliamentary elections are regulated by the Constitution. The elections are held after the four-year term of the previous assembly has expired, but can be held before that if the Assembly dismisses the Government or the Government resigns and no majority can be reached to elect new Government. Elections are called by the President of Serbia 90 days before the end of the term of office of the National Assembly, so that elections are finished within the following 60 days. Elections are closed party-list proportional; the whole country is one electoral district. 250 seats are distributed between the lists using d'Hondt method. There is a minimum voting threshold of 5%, so that only the party lists which get more than 5% of the votes are awarded the seats. There is no threshold for the ethnic minority lists. After the elections, the first session of the new Assembly is convened by the Speaker from the previous convocation, so that the session is held not than 30 days from the day of declaring the final election results.
The assembly is composed of 250 deputies. At least 30% of the deputies are women. Deputies may not hold dual functions. Deputies enjoy parliamentary immunity. By means of majority votes of all deputies, the National Assembly elects the President of the Assembly and one or more Vice-Presidents one vice-president from each parliamentary group; the President of the National Assembly represents the National Assembly, convokes its sessions, presides over them and performs other official activities. The vice-presidents assist the President in performing the duties within his/her purview. In case the President is temporarily absent, one of the Vice-Presidents designated by him/her stands in for him/her. If the President does not designate any of the Vice-Presidents to stand in for him/her, the oldest Vice-President shall stand in for him/her; the Secretary of the National Assembly is appointed by the National Assembly. Secretary of the National Assembly assists the President and Vice-Presidents in preparing and chairing sittings.
His/her term of office is terminated upon the constitution of a newly elected National Assembly, while he/she shall continue discharging his/her duties until the appointment of a new Secretary. Secretary is not elected from the deputies, is not member of the Assembly. Parliamentary groups in the National Assembly must be formed no than seven days following the election of the President. Any grouping of five or more deputies can be recognised as a parliamentary group, with each deputies permitted to be members of only a single group at any one time. Although groups are based on electoral lists from the previous election to the Assembly, groups are a diverse collection of different parties as well as independents; this is due to Serbia's complex multi-party system, with many parties having a presence in the legislature. An example of such a group includes the LDP-LSV-SDA group; the parliamentary groups are each led by a president, who are assisted by a number of vice presidents. The presidents of the groups meet with the President of the Assembly to discuss and arrange the agenda for future meetings.
Serbia's Law on the Election of Representatives indicated that
Eastern Orthodox Church
The Eastern Orthodox Church the Orthodox Catholic Church, is the second-largest Christian church, with 200–260 million members. It operates as a communion of autocephalous churches, each governed by its bishops in local synods, although half of Eastern Orthodox Christians live in Russia; the church has no central doctrinal or governmental authority analogous to the Bishop of Rome, but the Ecumenical Patriarch of Constantinople is recognised by all as primus inter pares of the bishops. As one of the oldest religious institutions in the world, the Eastern Orthodox Church has played a prominent role in the history and culture of Eastern and Southeastern Europe, the Caucasus, the Near East. Eastern Orthodox theology is based on the Nicene Creed; the church teaches that it is the One, Holy and Apostolic church established by Jesus Christ in his Great Commission, that its bishops are the successors of Christ's apostles. It maintains, its patriarchates, reminiscent of the pentarchy, autocephalous and autonomous churches reflect a variety of hierarchical organisation.
Of its innumerable sacred mysteries, it recognises seven major sacraments, of which the Eucharist is the principal one, celebrated liturgically in synaxis. The church teaches that through consecration invoked by a priest, the sacrificial bread and wine become the body and blood of Christ; the Virgin Mary is venerated in the Eastern Orthodox Church as the God-bearer, honoured in devotions. The Eastern Orthodox Church shared communion with the Roman Catholic Church until the East–West Schism in 1054, triggered by disputes over doctrine the authority of the Pope. Before the Council of Chalcedon in AD 451, the Oriental Orthodox churches shared in this communion, separating over differences in Christology; the majority of Eastern Orthodox Christians live in Southeast and Eastern Europe, Cyprus and other communities in the Caucasus region, communities in Siberia reaching the Russian Far East. There are smaller communities in the former Byzantine regions of the Eastern Mediterranean, in the Middle East where it is decreasing due to persecution.
There are many in other parts of the world, formed through diaspora and missionary activity. In keeping with the church's teaching on universality and with the Nicene Creed, Orthodox authorities such as Saint Raphael of Brooklyn have insisted that the full name of the church has always included the term "Catholic", as in "Holy Orthodox Catholic Apostolic Church"; the official name of the Eastern Orthodox Church is the "Orthodox Catholic Church". It is the name by which the church refers to itself in its liturgical or canonical texts, in official publications, in official contexts or administrative documents. Orthodox teachers refer to the church as Catholic; this name and longer variants containing "Catholic" are recognised and referenced in other books and publications by secular or non-Orthodox writers. The common name of the church, "Eastern Orthodox Church", is a shortened practicality that helps to avoid confusions in casual use. From ancient times through the first millennium, Greek was the most prevalent shared language in the demographic regions where the Byzantine Empire flourished, Greek, being the language in which the New Testament was written, was the primary liturgical language of the church.
For this reason, the eastern churches were sometimes identified as "Greek" before the Great Schism of 1054. After 1054, "Greek Orthodox" or "Greek Catholic" marked a church as being in communion with Constantinople, much as "Catholic" did for communion with Rome; this identification with Greek, became confusing with time. Missionaries brought Orthodoxy to many regions without ethnic Greeks, where the Greek language was not spoken. In addition, struggles between Rome and Constantinople to control parts of Southeastern Europe resulted in the conversion of some churches to Rome, which also used "Greek Catholic" to indicate their continued use of the Byzantine rites. Today, many of those same churches remain, while a large number of Orthodox are not of Greek national origin, do not use Greek as the language of worship. "Eastern" indicates the geographical element in the Church's origin and development, while "Orthodox" indicates the faith, as well as communion with the Ecumenical Patriarchate of Constantinople.
There are additional Christian churches in the east that are in communion with neither Rome nor Constantinople, who tend to be distinguished by the category named "Oriental Orthodox". While the church continues to call itself "Catholic", for reasons of universality, the common title of "Eastern Orthodox Church" avoids casual confusion with the Roman Catholic Church; the first known use of the phrase "the catholic Church" occurred in a letter written about 110 AD from one Greek church to another. The letter states: "Wheresoever the bishop shall appear, there let the people be as where Jesus may be, there is the universal Church." Thus from the beginning, Christians referred to the Church as the "One, Holy and Apostolic Church". The Eastern Orthodox Church claims that it is today the continuation and preservation of that same early Church. A number of other Christian churches make a similar claim: the Roman Catholic Church, the Anglican Communion, the Assyrian Church and the Oriental Orthodox.
In the Eastern Orthodox v
Red Star Stadium
Rajko Mitić Stadium known as Red Star Stadium known as Marakana, is a multi-use stadium in Belgrade, Serbia, the home ground of Red Star Belgrade since 1963. The stadium is located in municipality of Savski Venac. Rajko Mitić Stadium, renamed in December 2014 in honour of Red Star former player and club legend Rajko Mitić has a seating capacity of 55,538, is the largest stadium in Serbia by capacity. Marakana has hosted numerous international matches at a senior level, including European Cup final in 1973 and UEFA European Championship finals in 1976; the first football stadium in this location was opened on 24 April 1927. It was the stadium of SK Jugoslavija, Yugoslav football champion in 1924 and 1925, it consisted of a 30,000 capacity stadium with grass pitch, athletic track, training facility and club house. SK Jugoslavija played its matches on the stadium until the end of the Second World War when the club was disbanded by the new Yugoslav authorities; the ground was signed over to the newly founded club Red Star Belgrade.
The stadium was named "Avala". In 1945 it was seen as the stadium for the "Metalac" football club, but Vladimir Dedijer, president of the Yugoslav Gym Association at the time, granted it to the newly formed Red Star. In the summer of 1958, Red Star was to play against CDNA from Bulgaria. Municipal inspector from Stari Grad inspected the venue and declared it unusable, as the wooden beams were rotten; until the new stadium was built, Red Star played as the host at the JNA Stadium while used some other smaller venues for the lesser important matches. On 27 December 1959, Red Star played its last match at the old ground. FK Novi Sad was the opposition in a farewell game at the dilapidated arena. Together with the crumbling facility, a part of football history had left as well. At that stadium Moša Marjanović scored a famous goal on the Spanish keeper Ricardo Zamora František Plánička was defeated, after World War II plenty of exciting games were played; these included the European Cup quarter-final second leg on 5 February 1958, in which Red Star took on the English league champions Manchester United, who had won the first leg in England 2-1.
Despite fighting back to draw 3-3 after being 3-0 down, Red Star were eliminated from the competition by the English side. The game is most memorable for being the last played by the Manchester United side before the Munich air disaster the following day, when the team's aeroplane crashed in the West German city on the return journey. Eight Manchester United players were among the 23 people who died as a result of their injuries in the crash, while two of the surviving players were injured to such an extent that they never played again. After the farewell game, the stadium was demolished to be replaced by a modern new sporting facility on the same spot. In order to prepare an adequate foundation for the construction of the new stadium, it was to be started 12 meters lower than the previous one. Over 350,000 cubic metres of soil and 15,000 cubic metres of stone had to be excavated. To cut the costs on the rebars, it was decided that the new venue will be dug into the ground. In order to prepare an adequate foundation for the construction, the stadium was to be started 12 m lower than the previous one.
Over 350,000 m3 of soil and 15,000 m3 of stone had to be excavated. Soon, the problems occurred, as the digging threatened to trigger the landslide of the houses surrounding the site. At first, the experts suggested that the digging should stop and the project should be changed; the soil was probed, up to 8 m deep, the formation called "Sarmatian limestone" was discovered, which meant that the deep foundation was possible on the west and south side and the project was continued. On the east side, the ground had to be filled; the project was expensive. Small part came from the donations of the Red Star fans. Majority of funding came from the Executive Council, as the Government of Serbia was called at that time, which conditioned the funds with the construction of the athletic lanes. Construction was continued after the inaugural match in 1963 and the costs amounted. Roof above the west stand was to be expensive, with concrete arches, but prime minister Slobodan Penezić Krcun refused to grant that much money.
Instead, an iron roof was built, difficult to maintain. Because of the winds, the holes were left in the iron construction, but the auxiliary premises were built there though they shouldn't have; the workers' barracks at the auxiliary stadium were used by the club administration until the proper premises were built at the west stand in 1973. Administrative building has a single room occupancy for the athletes. City wanted to buy the administrative building for its purposes, but the club refused and paid the building in full to the constructors. After three years of construction, the new stadium was ready to be unveiled; the official opening took place on 1 September 1963 with the Yugoslav First League match against NK Rijeka. That day, some 55,000 spectators came through 9 entrance gates of 5 meters width each into the still unfinished stands; the first visitor to the stadium is known to be Laza Petrović, a peasant from the Loznica vicinity. This fiery Red Star fan arrived to the new stadium early in the morning and took his place in the eastern stand.
He took out cheese and a bannock from his bag ate his breakfast while he waited patientl
Galician Russophilia or Moscophiles were participants in a cultural and political movement in the Kingdom of Galicia and Lodomeria, Austria-Hungary. This ideology emphasized that since the Eastern Slavic people of Galicia were descendants of the people of Kievan Rus', followers of Eastern Christianity, that they were thus a branch of the Russian people; the movement was part of the whole Pan-Slavism, developing in the late 19th century. Russophilia was a reaction against Polish and Hungarian cultural suppression, associated with Roman Catholicism. Russophilia has survived longer among the Rusyn minority those in Carpathian Ruthenia, the Lemkos of south-east Poland, those in Bukovina; the "Russophiles" did not always apply the term to themselves, called themselves Russians, Ruthenians or Rusyny. Some Russophiles coined such terms as Obshche-rossy or Starorusyny to stress either the differences within their faction, referring to commonness with all Russians, or their unique stand within the whole of the Russian nation.
The ethnonym Ruthenians for Ukrainian people had been accepted by both the Russophiles and the Moscophiles for quite a long period of time. The new name Ukrainians began to be accepted by the Ruthenian Galicians around the 1890s, under the influence of Mykola Kostomarov and the Brotherhood of Saints Cyril and Methodius in central Ukraine. After the fall of the westernmost East Slavic state in 1349, most of the area of what is now Western Ukraine came under the control of Poland and Hungary, with Poland ruling Galicia and Hungary controlling Carpathian Ruthenia; the loss of independence began a period of gradual, centuries-long assimilation of much of the native elite into Polish and Hungarian culture. These elite adopted a national orientation in which they saw the native Rus population of Galicia as a branch of the Polish nation who happened to be of the Eastern Christian faith, they believed that the native language was a dialect of Polish, comparable to Mazovian, that assimilation would be inevitable.
This process of Polonisation was, resented by the peasants, the clergy, small minority of nobles who retained their East Slavic culture, religion or both. The latter two groups would form the nucleus of native national movements that would emerge with the loosening of Polish and Hungarian control in western Ukraine, which occurred when the entire region came under the control of the Austrian Habsburgs in the course of the Partitions of Poland; the Austrian Emperor emancipated the serfs, introduced compulsory education, raised the status of the Ruthenian priests to that of their Polish and Hungarian counterparts. Furthermore, they mandated that Ukrainian Catholic seminarians receive a formal higher education, organized institutions in Vienna and Lviv that would serve this function; this led to the appearance, for the first time, of a large educated social class within the Ukrainian population in Galicia. Austrian reforms led to a gradual social mobilization of the native inhabitants of Western Ukraine and the emergence of several national ideologies that reflected the natives' East Slavic culture and were opposed to that of Roman Catholic Poland and Hungary.
This development was encouraged by the Austrian authorities because it served to undermine Polish or Hungarian control of the area. The cultural movements included: Russophilia, the idea that Galicia was the westernmost part of Russia and that the natives of Western Ukraine were, like all of the Russian Empire's East Slavic inhabitants, members of one Russian nation. There existed a fluidity between all three national orientations, with people changing their allegiance throughout their lives, until the turn of the 20th century members of all three groups identified themselves by the ethnonym Ruthenians; the most prominent ideology was Ruthenianism, or Rutenstvo. Its proponents, referred to as "Old Ruthenians", were wealthier or more influential priests and the remnants of the nobility who had not been Polonised, were quite loyal to the Habsburgs to whom they owed their higher social standing. While emphasizing their separateness from the Poles in terms of religion and background, these people maintained an elitist attitude towards the peasantry.
They spoke the Polish language among themselves, tried to promote a version of Church Slavonic with elements of the local Ukrainian vernacular as well as the Russian language as a literary language for western Ukraine This language was never standardized, however. The language spoken by the common people was viewed with contempt. Old Ruthenians rejected both Russophilism; the Ukrainian thinker Mykhailo Drahomanov wrote of them, that "you Galician intellectuals do think of creating some kind of Uniate Paraguay, with some kind of hierarchical bureaucratic aristocracy, just like you have created an Austro-Ruthenian literary language!" Old Ruthenianism dominated Galicia's cultural scene until the mid-19th century, when it was supplanted by Russophilia. The early Galician Russophile Nikolay Kmicykevich wr
Donetsk is an industrial city in Ukraine on the Kalmius River. The population was estimated at 929,063 in the city, over 2,000,000 in the metropolitan area. According to the 2001 Ukrainian Census, Donetsk was the fifth-largest city in Ukraine. Administratively, it has been the centre of Donetsk Oblast, while it is the unofficial capital and largest city of the larger economic and cultural Donets Basin region. Donetsk is adjacent to another major city of Makiivka and along with other surrounding cities forms a major urban sprawl and conurbation in the region. Donetsk has been a major economic and scientific centre of Ukraine with a high concentration of companies and a skilled workforce; the original settlement in the south of the European part of the Russian Empire was first mentioned as Aleksandrovka in 1779, under the Russian Empress Catherine the Great. In 1869, Welsh businessman, John Hughes, built a steel plant and several coal mines in the region. During Soviet times, the city's steel industry was expanded.
In 1924, it was renamed Stalino, in 1932 the city became the centre of the Donetsk region. Renamed Donetsk in 1961, the city today remains the centre for steel industry. Since April 2014, Donetsk and its surrounding areas have been one of the major sites of fighting in the ongoing Donbass War, as pro-Russian separatist forces have battled against Ukrainian military forces for control of the city and surrounding areas. Through the majority of the course of this war, the city of Donetsk has been administered by the pro-Russian separatist forces, with outlying territories of the Donetsk region being divided between the two sides. On June 27, 2014, the unrecognized nation of South Ossetia recognized the Donetsk People's Republic's independence from Ukraine; as of May 8, 2018, the Donetsk People's Republic has full control of the city, with Ukrainian and DPR forces still engaging in combat outside of the city. The city was founded in 1869 when the Welsh businessman John Hughes built a steel plant and several coal mines at Aleksandrovka, in the south of European part of Russia.
It was named Hughesovka. In its early period, it received immigrants from Wales the town of Merthyr Tydfil. By the beginning of the 20th century, Yuzovka had 50,000 inhabitants, had attained the status of a city in 1917; the main district of "Hughezovka" is named English Colony, the British origin of the city is reflected in its layout and architecture. When the Russian Civil War broke out, on 12 February 1918 Yuzovka was part of the Donets-Krivoy Rog Soviet Republic; the Republic was disbanded at the 2nd All-Ukrainian Congress of Soviets on 20 March 1918 when the independence of the Soviet Ukraine was announced. It failed to achieve recognition, either internationally or by the Russian SFSR, and, in accordance with the Treaty of Brest-Litovsk, was abolished. In 1924, under the Soviet rule, the city's name was changed to Stalin. In that year, the city's population totaled 63,708, in the next year, 80,085. In 1929–31 the city's name was changed to Stalino; the city did not have a drinking water system until 1931, when a 55.3 km system was laid underground.
In July 1933, the city became the administrative center of the Donetsian Oblast of the Ukrainian SSR. In 1933, the first 12 km sewer system was installed, next year the first exploitation of gas was conducted within the city. In addition, some sources state that the city was called Trotsk—after Leon Trotsky—for a few months in 1923. At the beginning of World War II, the population of Stalino consisted of 507,000, after the war, only 175,000; the German invasion during World War II completely destroyed the city, rebuilt on a large scale at the war's end. It was occupied by German and Italian forces as part of the Reichskommissariat Ukraine between 16 October 1941 and 5 September 1943. In 1945, young men and women aged 17 to 35, from the Danube Swabian communities of Yugoslavia and Romania, were forcibly sent to Russia as Allied "war reparations", being put to work as slave labour to rebuild Stalino and to work in its mines; the conditions were so poor that many died from malnutrition. During Nikita Khrushchev's second wave of destalinization in November 1961, the city was renamed Donetsk, after the Seversky Donets River, a tributary of the Don in order to distance it from the former leader Joseph Stalin.
In 1965, the Donetsk Academy of Sciences was established as part of the Academy of Science of the Ukrainian SSR. After experiencing a tough time in the 1990s, when it was the center of gang wars for control over industrial enterprises, Donetsk has modernised in recent years under the influence of big companies. In 1994 a referendum took place in the Donetsk Oblast and the Luhansk Oblast, with around 90% supporting the Russian language gaining status of an official language alongside Ukrainian, for the Russian language to be an official language on a regional level. In the 1990s and the 2000s coal mine collapses took place in Donetsk and the region, taking the lives of hundreds. Ukraine has had a series of mining accidents since the collapse of the Soviet Union in 1991, one reason being given is the linking of miners' pay t