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7 (2014)
Tunnelling Towards Hope


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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.

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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.

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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.

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My Kyiv
The effervescent Terry Pickard has been in Kyiv for 20 years. Even before we met in person a number of years ago, I knew of him; his reputation as a shrewd businessman, cool connoisseur and lucky ladies man preceded him. Now, at the age of 65, having carved out a very nice life for himself, he certainly could be looking to retire, but says that life is just too much fun to sit around all day that would be boring.

Bohdan Kulchyckyj (or Dan) was born in the US to parents from Western Ukraine whod emigrated during the war. He grew up in Philadelphia, but was raised as a Ukrainian, speaking Ukrainian at home and going to Ukrainian school. He always longed to visit his homeland, and as soon as the Soviet UNI0N collapsed he was on his way over. Despite the fact hed graduated as a mechanical engineer, he came to import cars.
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Since Stephen Ansell, the first GM of an international hotel chain, first turned up in Kyiv over seven years ago, this very special breed of person has become something of a target for humourours sympathy as weve all stood by and watched opening dates put back and put back again. That was until charismatic Catalonian Ferran Brufau turned up. He arrived in June and, much to the jealousy of other hotel GMs around town, his 4-star Radisson Blu on Podil opens this month, as he promised it would only five months ago. Whats On caught up with him to find out how he managed it.

I think Ive started one of our My Kyiv features before by saying that one of the great things about life in Kyiv is the interesting people you meet who lead fascinating lives. Greg Krasnov, CEO at Platinum Bank, is just such a character. Born and raised in Ukraine, he emigrated with his family to the US at the age of seventeen, where he did his undergraduate studies at Arizona State. He then moved to England to do his Masters (at Cambridge no less), and after its completion he decided to stay in Europe, working first in Warsaw, then London, then Warsaw again. All that time he had his eye on Ukraine, just waiting for the right opportunity to present itself

Its up to whether you sit at home whining about the cold and suffering from winter depression, or you decide to put all this weakness to one side and make the most of every day life gives you. Unfortunately for us who live in Ukraine, from late November until early March the weather is usually pretty nasty. Is it all really that bad though?

One of the great things about life in Kyiv is that you come across many interesting characters as you go about your daily routine. Few can be more interesting than Jock Mendoza-Wilson, international PR man for Systems Capital Management, owned by Ukraines richest man, Rinat Akhmetov. And thats what makes Jock doubly interesting. Not only has he the inside knowledge on the business workings of a man who has to be one of the most intriguing in Ukraine, hes also a character unto himself.

Worlds most travelled man. 139 countries. 3,000 hours on Concorde, 19-20,000 hours otherwise. 15 million miles, 24 million kilometres.
Originally from Canterbury (Kent). Lived in the US, Kenya, Ethiopia, Iran, India. Hes chosen Ukraine as his home.
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PR, like many of the finer nuances of a free market economy, is quite a new and often misunderstood concept here in Ukraine. But one man, namely Martin Nunn, has been championing this particular capitalist cause since he first turned up in the country many years ago.

Many people associate Portugal with golf, Madeira wine, Jose Mourinho and the financial crisis. Whats On recently met with His Excellency the Ambassador of Portugal to Ukraine, Mario Jesus dos Santos, and found our perceptions changed. It turns out that what we should really associate it with is cement, medical fabric and liquid fuel containers
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Coca-Cola is the worlds most popular soft drink, goes well with any meal and is the best refreshment for any thirsty consumer. Its as popular here in Ukraine as it is the world over, despite the fact its not so easy to distribute here as it is in other places. The company is celebrating 125 years this week, so we thought it was the ideal time to track down the head of Coca-Cola Ukraine, Walter Gordon, and ask him all about his life and work in this most interesting of countries.
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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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