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Ukraine History Timeline

900s – 1800s
  • (907) Chernihiv founded in the Ukraine
  • (1256) City of Lviv, present-day Ukraine, founded by Danylo king of Rus
  • (1651) Battle of Beresteczko, between Poles and Ukrainians, Poles won
  • (1654) Russian army seized Smolensk, Thirteen Years War started between Russia and Poland over Ukraine
  • (1667) Poland ceded Kiev, Smolensk, and eastern Ukraine to Russia in the Treaty of Andrusovo
  • (1670) Rebellion of Cossacks in Ukraine crushed
  • (1744) Construction of St. George Cathedral in Lviv
  • (1746) Town of Vilkovo founded
  • (1783) City of Sevastopol founded on the Crimean Peninsula of Ukraine
  • (1834) University of Lviv established
  • (1863) Ukrainian language officially prohibited
  • (1881) Meteorite struck near the village of Gro
  • (1890) First Ukrainian political party, Halytska, formed
1900s
  • (1905) Annulment of restrictions on the use of Ukrainian language in Russian Empire
  • (1917) Central Rada set up in Kiev, followed collapse of Russian Empire
  • (1918) Ukraine declared independence; Ukrainian People's Republic set up
  • (1921) Formation of Soviet Socialist Republic of Ukraine
  • (1932) During Stalin's collectivization campaign, about seven million peasants perished in man-made famine
  • (1937) Stalin launched purge against intellectuals, mass executions and deportations
  • (1941-1944) Germans occupied Ukraine; most of Ukraine's 1.5 million Jews wiped out by the Nazis; about five million Ukrainians died fighting Nazi Germany
  • (1945) World War II allied victory led to Soviet annexation of western Ukrainian lands
  • (1954) Armed resistance to Soviet rule ended with defeat of Ukrainian Insurgent Army
  • (1986) Chernobyl nuclear power station reactor exploded, sent a radioactive cloud across Europe
  • (1988) Ukrainian People's Movement for restructuring Rukh set up by writers and intellectuals
  • (1990) Human chain protested for Ukrainian independence; Ukrainian sovereignty proclaimed
  • (1991) Ukrainian independence proclaimed from Soviet Union; Ukrainians voted overwhelmingly for independence from the Soviet Union in a referendum; leaders of Russia, Belarus and Ukraine signed an agreement, Commonwealth of Independent States, to end Soviet Union rule
  • (1994) US President Bill Clinton and Russian President Boris Yeltsin signed the Kremlin Accords, which stopped the preprogrammed aiming of nuclear missiles toward each country's target, also provided for the dismantling of the nuclear arsenal in Ukraine; Leonid Kuchma succeeded Leonid Kravchuk in presidential elections; Ukraine signed treaty with NATO
  • (1996) New democratic constitution adopted; hryvna currency introduced
  • (1997) Ukraine and Russia signed friendship treaty; Ukraine and Russia reached agreement on Black Sea fleet
  • (1998) Ukrainian serial killer Anatoly Onoprienko, sentenced to death for 52 murders
  • (1999) Death penalty abolished; nationalist leader Vyacheslav Chornovil killed in car crash; President Kuchma re-elected
2000s
  • (2000) Chernobyl nuclear power plant shut down, 14 years after explosion
  • (2001) Pope John Paul II made first visit to Ukraine, Orthodox Christians in Ukraine and Russia protested visit; Ukrainian military accidentally shot down Russian airliner over the Black Sea, killed all 78 on board; Defense Minister Olexander Kuzmuk resigned; Ukraine's last Soviet-era nuclear missile silo destroyed
  • (2002) Ukraine held parliamentary elections, resulted in hung parliament; decision announced to formally bid to join NATO; military aircraft crashed into spectators at air show in western Ukraine, 80 killed and 100 injured; Air Force Chief Viktor Strelnykov, dismissed after disaster; mass protest demanded resignation of President Kuchma, accused of corruption and misrule; President Kuchma dismissed Prime Minister Kinakh; Viktor Yanukovych replaced Kinakh
  • (2003) Kiev demonstrations demanded Kuchma resign; border dispute erupted with Russia and Ukraine on building a causeway across Kerch Strait between Russian coast and Ukrainian island of Tuzla off Crimean shores; Presidents Kuchma and Putin signed agreement for joint use of Kerch Strait
  • (2004) Underground gas explosion killed more than 30 coal miners; official count indicated presidential election victory for Prime Minister Viktor Yanukovych, observers reported vote rigged; supreme court later annulled result of polls; Viktor Yanukovych challenged results, resigned as prime minister
  • (2005) Viktor Yushchenko sworn in as president, after Supreme Court rejected challenge by losing candidate Yanukovych; Yulia Tymoshenko approved as prime minister by parliament; President dismissed Yulia Tymoshenko government; parliament approved Yushchenko's candidate for Premier Yuri Yekhanurov, on second attempt
  • (2006) Russia briefly cut supply of gas for Ukrainian use over prices; changes to constitution shifted significant powers from the president to parliament
  • (2006) Russian commercial airliner crashed in eastern Ukraine, 170 killed
  • (2007) Coal mine explosion in Zasyadko mine killed 63, 37 were missing
  • (2007) President Yushchenko dissolved parliament, parliamentary leaders failed to resolve the power struggle with pro-Russian Prime Minister Yanukovych; no clear winner in parliamentary elections; Yulia Tymoshenko appointed prime minister, in coalition with President Yushchenko's party
  • (2008) New contract to supply Ukraine's industrial consumers directly ended row over gas supply; Russian President Dmitry Medvedev warned Ukraine that joining NATO would breach their friendship treaty; NATO refused to offer membership to Ukraine and Georgia due to objections from Russia; coalition government collapsed; President Yushchenko dissolved parliament; International Monetary Fund offered a loan; parties of President Yushchenko and Prime Minister Tymoshenko agreed to re-form their coalition government
  • (2009) Russia stopped all gas supplies; supplies restored after Ukraine and Russia signed a 10-year agreement on gas transit; 27 people froze to death in Ukraine due to snow storms and sub-zero temperatures across Europe; Flu pandemic caused more than two million people to fall ill, 500 died
  • (2010) Viktor Yanukovych declared winner of presidential second round elections; Prime Minister Yulia Tymoshenko alleged fraud, refused to accept the result; Yulia Tymoshenko stepped down, Mykola Azarov appointed to succeed as prime minister; Ukraine agreed to eliminate stockpile of weapon-grade nuclear material ahead of the Washington nuclear security summit; parliament ratified an agreement to extend Russia's lease on the Black Sea fleet base Sevastopol in Crimea for 25 years in return for cheaper gas imports; parliament voted to abandoned NATO membership aspirations; constitutional court overturned limits on presidential power introduced in 2004

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This page was last modified on April 7, 2017.