UN Special Rapporteur on the Human Rights of Internally Displaced Persons Chaloka Beyani will visit Ukraine in the period from September 1 until September 9 for meetings with government representatives, civil society and families of displaced persons, the UN news center said on Wednesday.
Last year, Ukraine’s economy shrank by 12%. Its slow-drip, two-and-a-half-year conflict with Russia has killed nearly 10,000 people and displaced about two million in the east of the country. But if the Maidan revolution, which ousted a Russia-friendly regime in February 2014, has largely failed to install the transparent, democratic government its proponents envisioned, it at least appears to have , The Guardian reports:
Bold young artists, promoters, entrepreneurs and officials have quietly begun to transform this city of three million into a hotbed of urban creativity, with innovative theatre, outdoor concerts and food events, a slew of smart bars and cafes, and a flowering of film production and appreciation.
RFE/RL’s Brian Whitmore says Russia will likely keep trying to undermine Ukraine’s independence, but Ukrainians are very mindful of this.
“Ukrainian civil society is developed to the point where it’s extremely strong and they will not accept giving up their independence,” he says.
A case in point…..
On July 7, 2014, Russian-backed separatists entered Donetsk and occupied four dormitories at Donetsk National University; armed gunmen expelled students from their rooms in the middle of the night. Nine days later, the separatists seized the entire university. During that summer, separatists stole at least seventeen university vehicles and converted student dorms into barracks for their fighters, writes Melinda Haring, the editor of the UkraineAlert at the Atlantic Council:
At the time, students, administrators, and faculty fled. There was no time to think about packing up the library or the laboratory. But eventually, the university, one of Ukraine’s best, relocated to central Ukraine, to the city of Vinnytsia. Remarkably, two years after the invasion, the university has almost completely re-established itself.