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In 1991, Ukraine achieved independence with the dissolution of the USSR. On Feb. 23, 2022, Russia invaded Ukraine in what has been reported as "the biggest attack by one state against another in Europe since World War II." Several world leaders have denounced the attack and promise sanctions against Russia.

Check this page regularly for updated news and information related to the invasion.


UKRAINE FACTS

A map of Ukraine showing the location of major cities.
Troy Becker / The Forum

  • Capital: Kyiv
  • Population: 43.7 million (July 2021 est.)
  • Population Growth: -0.49% (2021 est.)
  • Legislature: Unicameral Supreme Council or Verkhovna Rada (450 seats)
  • Area: 233,031 square miles
  • Historical: Ukraine was the center of the first eastern Slavic state, Kyivan Rus, which during the 10th and 11th centuries was the largest and most powerful state in Europe. Ukraine achieved independence in 1991 with the dissolution of the USSR.
  • Economy: Lower middle-income non-EU Eastern European economy; major reforms after Maidan revolution; major wheat producer; industrial and energy exporter; persistent Russian interference and corruption weaken growth and investments; negatively impacted by COVID-19 pandemic.
  • Language: Ukrainian (official) 67.5%, Russian (regional language) 29.6%, other 2.9% (2001 est.)
  • Religion: Orthodox, Ukrainian Greek Catholic, Roman Catholic, Protestant, Muslim, Jewish (2013 est.)
  • Natural resources: Ukraine has more recoverable reserves of uranium ores than any other European nation, and is second in the world in iron ore reserves (2010). The nation is third in Europe for shale gas reserves and has the world's fourth-largest natural gas pipeline system. “Roughly 20% of Europe’s gas passes through Ukraine and the country has the third-largest gas production and the fourth-largest gas market in Europe,” according to a 2007 Oxford Institue for Energy Studies report.
  • Agriculture: Ukraine has more arable land than any other nation in Europe. It is the number one exporter of sunflowers and sunflower oil in the world (2019). The country is the world's fourth-largest exporter of corn (2019-2020), third in potato production (2019), and the number five exporter of wheat in the world (2020).
  • More info about Ukraine.

Sources: CIA World Factbook; Snopes.com


LATEST RUSSIA/UKRAINE HEADLINES

Biden said the prospect of defeat could make Putin desperate enough to use nuclear weapons, the biggest risk since U.S. President John Kennedy and Soviet leader Nikita Khrushchev faced off over missiles in Cuba in 1962.

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MORE HEADLINES

Putin also accused officials of NATO countries of making statements about "the possibility and admissibility of using weapons of mass destruction against Russia - nuclear weapons."
Shortly after the announcement regarding plans for a vote in Kherson, the head of Russia's parliament said he would support the regions joining Russia.
In an evening address, President Volodymyr Zelenskyy said around 3,100 square miles have been liberated so far, apparently all in the northeastern region of Kharkiv. "Stabilization measures" had been completed in about half of that territory, Zelenskyy said, "and across a liberated area of about the same size, stabilization measures are still ongoing."
Ukraine's general staff said its soldiers had recaptured more than 20 towns and villages in just the past day. President Volodymyr Zelenskyy said Ukraine's troops had retaken 2,400 square miles of Russian-held land since the start of the month, twice the figure given just a day earlier.
After keeping silent for a day, Russia effectively acknowledged that a section of its frontline had crumbled southeast of Ukraine's second-largest city Kharkiv. "The enemy is being delayed as much as possible, but several settlements have already come under the control of Ukrainian armed formations," Vitaly Ganchev, head of the Russian-backed administration in the Kharkiv region, said on state television host Vladimir Solovyov's daily livestream.
Ukraine remained guarded about its counter-offensive in the east but its top general warned Russia could turn to nuclear weapons and other nations could be drawn into a protracted "Third World War."