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Video: Ukraine 101 – 10 Basic Facts About Ukraine

No doubt you’ve been hearing a lot about the situation in Ukraine, but perhaps not much about the country itself. Here are 10 facts to help fill in the gaps.

No doubt you’ve been hearing a lot about the situation in Ukraine, but perhaps not much about the country itself.
Here are 10 facts to help fill in the gaps.

Number 10. Ukraine is the second largest country in Europe. It measures a bit over 6 hundred thousand square kilometers, making it about as big as Texas, but still way smaller than Russia.

Number 9. A lot of people live there. As of July, 2013 it had 44 and a half million residents. By comparison, that’s roughly how many people live in Spain.

Number 8. Most citizens are Ukrainian by ethnicity. In fact, over 75 percent are. The next most common ethnicity is Russian, which accounts for about 17 percent of the population.

Number 7. Ukrainian is the official language. Still, it is spoken by less than 70 percent of the population. Close to 25 percent opt for Russian, and the remainder gravitate towards Romanian, Hungarian, and Polish tongues.

Number 6. Ukrainian Orthodoxy is the main religion. There are two dominant denominations of it — the Kiev Patriarchate, which is followed by about half of the population, and the Moscow Patriarchate, with about a quarter of it. Among the other popular churches in the country are the Greek Catholic and the Ukrainian Autocephalous Orthodox.

Number 5. Borscht and Varenyky are real crowd pleasers there. The Beet soup and filled dumplings are the types of favorites made from recipes passed down for generations.

Number 4. It has 7 other countries pressed up against it. It shares borders with Belarus, Poland, Slovakia, Hungary, Romania, Maldova, and Russia.

Number 3. A lot of countries have made claims on the land we now call Ukraine. Those that have occupied and/or ruled the area in the past include the Mongols, Poland, Lithuania, and Russia.

Number 2. Ukraine has the 54th largest economy in the world. It’s main industries include coal and metals. It is also the planet’s largest producer of sunflowers.

Number 1. They’re tops in agricultural exports. On a global scale, Ukraine is the 4th largest exporter of corn and is expected to be the 6th largest exporter of wheat in 2014.

Royce Christyn
About Royce Christyn (3467 Articles)
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