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7 (2014)
Tunnelling Towards Hope

28 February - 6 March 2014

Ukraine History

A Stronghold of Rulers and Rebels

With the recent death toll jumping to nearly 100 and 1,000 injured, Hrushevskoho Street, one of the strongholds of EuroMaidans three-month-long protests, made headlines around the globe. It was here, on 19 January the countrys stand against government corruption, abuse of power, and the violation of human rights turned from peaceful protest to all-out revolution. Having witnessed much over the years, Hrushevskoho is a street with a history, and not only care of recent days.


Ukraine Today
Acelebrity using their status and intelligence to influence public views and opinion is rarely seen in modern society, even less so in Ukraine. Here, the majority of celebs use their time, effort, and money to enhance or further their career rather than put their name to something that can do good for others. However, as EuroMaidan intensifies, some are making themselves heard and they fall either side of the EuroMaidan divide.
It used to be that when rebellion and revolution occurred, the intellectual, creative, and spiritual elite would be front and centre.


Ukrainian Culture

When Walls Can Talk

People have been writing on walls since the dawn of civilisation, we call it graffiti, and ranges from simple written words to elaborate wall paintings. Sometimes it is merely the creator wanting to leave his or her mark; sometimes there is an underlying social or political reason. And it is due to the latter that graffiti has exploded across Kyiv in recent months. Anti dictator messages aside, we peel back a few layers of paint to look at graffiti in the city in general.


What's On Archive 14 (2010)

14 (2010)/2010
16 April - 22 April
Stomping Good Rhythms
Banging beats using trashcans and tyres courtesy of Stomp

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From THE EDITOR (14) - Editorial
On Sunday afternoon I took a long stroll down to Rodina Mat, and from there past the Lavra Monastery down to Mariinsky Park, and on down to Kreshchatyk. It was a lovely warm and sunny afternoon (mostly), and while the trees and flowers are not yet in bloom, it was a very pleasant experience after such a long dark winter; so pleasant in fact I decided that I would write this weeks editorial on the joys of spring in Kyiv. Then, however, after shopping for Sunday dinner, I got home to find I had no water hot or cold. I called in the services of my translator, who called the ZHEK to be told that the apartment two floors below me had flooded the apartments below them, and there was no one home, so theyd had to turn off the water to our side of the building until someone turned up and they could check what was happening.


Want Cheap Ukrainian Beer? Head to Minsk - Whats Up?
Ukrainian beer is, in this humble writers opinion, the best beer in the world. Chernigivske and Slavutych are just great for supping on a warm spring day on a sun-drenched terrace, but if youre looking to save a penny or two then you should fly to the Belarusian capital Minsk where it is a fraction of the cost it is here at home.
In fact, it's so cheap just across the northern border that the Belarusian government has launched an investigation into suspected dumping of beer from Ukraine.
In a notice published by the state newspaper, Rspubliska, the ministry said the investigation had been launched at the request of the Belarusian State Food Industry Concern because imports of beer from Ukraine rose from 17.6 million litres in 2007 to 42.8 million litres in 2009. Not only that, but the average price of Ukrainian beer fell from $418.5 per 1000 litres in 2007 to $388 for the same volume last year.
The share of Ukrainian beer in Belarus beer imports increased from 18.7 percent on 2007 to 32.6 percent in 2009. Most interesting of all the statistics, however, is the retail price of Ukrainian beer, which in October last year, on average, was $0.87 per litre here at home, and only $0.38 in Belarus.


Platini Gives Yanukovych Two Months toGet Moving - Whats Up?
UEFA President Michel Platini arrived in the country last week for a whirlwind tour of the four Ukrainian cities cited for hosting the EURO 2012 football finals, and it seems as though what he saw did not impress him, because he left telling the government it had two months to catch up on preparations, or could face losing out all together.
In a meeting with Yanukovych, he told the president that things had to get moving. I told him we need guarantees from the government on going forward and I told him that in the next two months we would like to see strong signs of advancing, Platini told waiting press after the meeting. He went on to say that Yanukovych had promised that the work would get done.


Yanukovych Meets Obama - Whats Up?
The big man flew to Washington on Monday to attend the nuclear summit that took place there earlier in the week, and when there he was granted an audience with his American counterpart, Barack Obama. Obama held a series of one-on-one meetings with the leaders of China, Jordan, Armenia and Malaysia too.
Strangely, lumbering Yanukovych came out of the summit as something of a star by agreeing to dispose of Ukraines stockpile of weapons-grade Uranium, something the US and Obama seemed particularly pleased about.
After the meeting, in an interview with the Washington Post, Yanukovych clearly outlined his foreign policy strategy for Ukraine.


Russia and Ukraine Move Closer - Whats Up?
Not only is the new government allegedly influencing the decisions of the legal system, it also looks like its quickly climbing back into the pocket of the Kremlin. This week the Russian and Ukrainian prime ministers sat down together at Moscows Vnukovo Airport, and while airport meetings tend to be rather rapid affairs, this one proved to very fruitful, with Putin promising to consider lending Ukraine a whole lotta money to expand its nuclear energy capabilities, and a new deal on gas supplies.
We discussed cooperation on nuclear energy, Putin said after the meeting. And the possibility to lend $5-6 billion to construct third and fourth reactors for the Khmelitsky Nuclear Power Station. Thats a substantial sum, and one were sure doesnt come without lots and lots of string attached.


Government Announces Court Decision Before Court - Whats Up?
Weve only had a couple of months of Yanukovych, and already the country seems to be slipping back into its dark and murky past. And this is best demonstrated by the fact that last week Deputy Prime Minister Andriy Kluyever announced the decision of the Constitutional Court on the case regarding the legislative amendments Yanukovych forced through the Verhovna Rada allowing him to form a coalition a full day before the court itself announced its ruling.
Ukraines constitution clearly sets out that a parliamentary majority can only be formed based on party factions. This is quite clearly correct, because voters cast ballots for political parties, not individuals.


Independent Ukraines Only Astronaut - Ukraine History
When I first met up with Independent Ukraines first and only man to have ever experienced space, I was quite amazed. Once a major-general of the Ukrainian Armed Forces, he has also been decorated as a Hero of Ukraine for his space exploration expertise. And having just come in from a 10km cross-country run, which he says he does religiously every morning, he is full of energy that just boils over at every chance. Remembering his past adventures and revealing his hopes for the future, Leonid Kadenyuk is a great example to all 59 year olds out there.


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Ukraine Truth
Rights We Didnt Know We Had

Throughout EuroMaidan much has been made of Ukrainians making a stand for their rights. What exactly those rights are were never clearly defined. Ukraine ratified the Universal Declaration of Human Rights in 1952. The first article of the Declaration states all human beings are born free and equal in dignity and rights, they are endowed with reason and conscience, and should act towards one another in a spirit of brotherhood. The ousted and overthrown Ukrainian government showed to the world they dont understand the meaning of these words.

Kyiv Culture

Pulling Strings
Located on Hrushevskoho Street the epicentre of EuroMaidan violence, home to battles, blazes and barricades childrens favourite the Academic Puppet Theatre had to shut down in February. Nevertheless, it is getting ready to reopen this March with a renewed repertoire to bring some laughter back to a scene of tragedy. Operating (not manipulating) puppets is a subtle art that can make kids laugh and adults cry. Whats On meets Mykola Petrenko, art director of the Theatre, to learn more about those who pull the strings behind the show.


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