Ukraine (Ukrainian: Україна, romanized: Ukraïna, pronounced [ʊkrɐˈjinɐ] (listen)) is a country in Eastern Europe. It is the second-largest European country after Russia, which it borders to the east and northeast.[lower-alpha 1][11] Ukraine covers approximately 600,000 square kilometres (230,000 sq mi),[lower-alpha 2] and had a pre-war population of around 41 million people.[lower-alpha 3][6] It is also bordered by Belarus to the north; by Poland, Slovakia, and Hungary to the west; and by Romania and Moldova[lower-alpha 4] to the southwest; with a coastline along the Black Sea and the Sea of Azov to the south and southeast.[lower-alpha 5] Kyiv is the nation's capital and largest city. The country's national language is Ukrainian, although the majority of the population is also fluent in Russian.[14]

Україна (Ukrainian)
Anthem: Державний Гімн України
Derzhavnyi Himn Ukrainy
"State Anthem of Ukraine"
and largest city
49°N 32°E
Official language
and national language
Ethnic groups
GovernmentUnitary semi-presidential republic
Volodymyr Zelenskyy
Denys Shmyhal
Ruslan Stefanchuk
LegislatureVerkhovna Rada
18 August 1649
10 June 1917
22 January 1918
1 November 1918
22 January 1919
24 August 1991
1 December 1991
28 June 1996
603,628[4] km2 (233,062 sq mi) (45th)
 Water (%)
 January 2022 estimate
(excluding Crimea) (36th)
 2001 census
73.8/km2 (191.1/sq mi) (115th)
GDP (PPP)2021 estimate
$588 billion[7]
 Per capita
GDP (nominal)2021 estimate
$198 billion[7]
 Per capita
Gini (2020) 25.6[8]
HDI (2019) 0.779[9]
high · 74th
CurrencyHryvnia (₴) (UAH)
Time zoneUTC+2[10] (EET)
 Summer (DST)
Driving sideright
Calling code+380
ISO 3166 codeUA
Internet TLD

During the Middle Ages, the area was a key centre of East Slavic culture under the state of Kievan Rus', which emerged in the 9th century and was destroyed by a Mongol invasion in the 13th century. After the Mongol invasion, the Kingdom of Ruthenia (13th to 14th century) became the successor of Kievan Rus' on the side of modern Ukraine,[15] which was later absorbed by the Grand Duchy of Lithuania and the Kingdom of Poland. The Grand Duchy of Lithuania became the de facto successor of the traditions of Kievan Rus'. Ruthenian lands within the Grand Duchy of Lithuania enjoyed wide autonomy.[16] Over the next 600 years, the area was contested, divided, and ruled by a variety of external powers, including the Polish–Lithuanian Commonwealth, the Austrian Empire, the Ottoman Empire, and the Tsardom of Russia. The Cossack Hetmanate emerged in central Ukraine in the 17th century, but was partitioned between Russia and Poland, and ultimately absorbed by the Russian Empire. After the Russian Revolution a Ukrainian national movement re-emerged, and formed the Ukrainian People's Republic in 1917. This short-lived state was forcibly reconstituted by the Bolsheviks into the Ukrainian Soviet Socialist Republic, which became a founding member of the Soviet Union in 1922. In the 1930s millions of Ukrainians were killed by the Holodomor, a man-made famine of the Stalinist era.

Following the collapse of the Soviet Union in 1991, Ukraine regained independence and declared itself neutral,[17] forming a limited military partnership with the post-Soviet Commonwealth of Independent States, while also joining the Partnership for Peace with NATO in 1994. In 2013 a series of mass demonstrations, known as the Euromaidan, erupted across Ukraine, eventually escalating into the Revolution of Dignity in 2014, which led to the establishment of a new government and pro-Russian unrest. During this period, unmarked Russian troops invaded the Crimean Peninsula, which was later annexed by Russia; and pro-Russia unrest in Ukraine's Donbas culminated in Russia-backed separatists seizing territory throughout the region, sparking the War in Donbas. This series of events marked the beginning of the ongoing Russo-Ukrainian War, and in a major escalation of the conflict in February 2022, Russia launched a full-scale invasion of Ukraine. Since the outbreak of war with Russia in 2014, Ukraine has continued to seek closer economic, political, and military ties with the Western world, including with the United States, European Union, and NATO.[18]

Ukraine is a unitary republic under a semi-presidential system and a developing country, ranking 74th on the Human Development Index. Despite having a free-market economy, Ukraine remains among the poorest countries in Europe by nominal GDP per capita,[19] especially in the east[20] due to war.[21] However, due to its extensive fertile land, pre-war Ukraine was one of the largest grain exporters in the world.[22][23] It is a founding member of the United Nations, as well as a member of the Council of Europe, the World Trade Organization, the OSCE, and is currently in the process of joining the European Union.

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