36 Facts About Donetsk


Donetsk, formerly known as Aleksandrovka, Yuzivka, Stalin and Stalino, is an industrial city in eastern Ukraine located on the Kalmius River in Donetsk Oblast.

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Administratively, Donetsk has been the centre of Donetsk Oblast, while historically, it is the unofficial capital and largest city of the larger economic and cultural Donets Basin region.

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Donetsk is adjacent to another major city, Makiivka, and along with other surrounding cities forms a major urban sprawl and conurbation in the region.

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Donetsk has been a major economic, industrial and scientific centre of Ukraine with a high concentration of heavy industries and a skilled workforce.

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City of Donetsk was founded in 1869 by Welsh businessman John Hughes, who operated a steel plant and several coal mines at Aleksandrovka.

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Whilst getting praise for its business potential in 2009, Donetsk received criticism for the strong mafia connection of its growing oligarchy, and for an increasing poverty rate.

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Later in the week the authorities of Donetsk disallowed a referendum on the status of the region and the police retook the Donetsk OSA building.

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Donetsk became one of the centers of the 2014 pro-Russian conflict in Ukraine.

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Since 7 April 2014 Donetsk is de facto governed by the Donetsk People's Republic as its capital city.

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Territory of Donetsk is divided into 9 administrative raions, whose local government is administered by raion councils, which are subordinate to the Donetsk City Council.

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Donetsk had a population of over 985,000 inhabitants in 2009 and over 1,566,000 inhabitants in the metropolitan area in 2004.

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In 2012, Donetsk was rated the best city for business in Ukraine by Forbes.

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Donetsk topped the rating in five indicators: human capital, the purchasing power of citizens, investment situation, economic stability, as well as infrastructure and comfort.

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Donetsk is a large sports center, has a developed infrastructure, and has repeatedly held international competitions – Davis Cup, UEFA Champions League.

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Shakhtar Donetsk won the Ukrainian Championship and Ukrainian Cup multiple times, and in 2009 they became the second team from Ukraine to win a European competition, the UEFA Cup.

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Donetsk was home to the women's football club WFC Donchanka, one of the most successful clubs in the history of the Ukrainian Women's League, but it ceased operations in 2014.

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Donetsk is home to the football stadium Donbas Arena, which was opened in 2009.

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Donetsk is home to the ice hockey club HC Donbass, playing at the Druzhba Arena since 2011, which won the 2011 Ukrainian Hockey Championship, and which is the only elite level team in the country.

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Donetsk was home to the basketball club BC Donetsk, which played in the Ukrainian Basketball Super League, and won the 2012 champion title.

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The club played at the Druzhba Arena, and Donetsk had been chosen as one of the 6 Ukrainian cities to host the FIBA EuroBasket 2015.

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The MFC Shakhtar Donetsk club won the Ukrainian futsal championship five times, but was dissolved in January 2011 midway through the season due to financial problems.

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One of the top Soviet volleyball teams at the time, VC Shakhtar Donetsk, who were the last team to win the Soviet Volleyball Championship, in 1992.

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Donetsk hosted the USSR Tennis Championship in 1978,1979 and 1980, and hosted some tennis matches of the 2005 Davis Cup.

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Donetsk was always an important athletics centre, and hosted various events.

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Donetsk was one of the host towns for the 1978 and 1980 Soviet Athletics Championships, and was the sole host town of the event in 1984.

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Alley of Angels in Donetsk is a memorial to children killed during the Russo-Ukrainian War.

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Donetsk's residents belong to religious traditions including the Eastern Orthodox Church Eastern Catholic Churches, Protestantism, and the Roman Catholic Church, as well as Islam and Judaism.

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In Donetsk, there is the 360-metre tall TV tower, one of the tallest structures in the city, completed in 1992.

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On 21 August 2014, the mayor of Donetsk reported that the roof and walls of the Donetsk Regional History Museum had been destroyed by shellfire early that morning.

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Main forms of transport within Donetsk are: trams, electric trolley buses, buses and marshrutkas.

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Donetsk Oblast was an important transport hub in Ukraine, so was its centre Donetsk.

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The Donetsk Railways, based in Donetsk, is the largest railway division in the Republic.

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Donetsk has several universities, which include five state universities, 11 institutes, three academies, 14 technicums, five private universities, and six colleges.

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Donetsk is the home of the Donetsk National Medical University, which was founded in 1930 and became one of the largest medical universities in the Soviet Union.

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Donetsk is the home of the Prokofiev Donetsk State Music Academy, a music conservatory founded in 1960.

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Donetsk participates in international town twinning schemes to foster good international relations.

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