Donetsk is a metropolitan area in Ukraine
Inhabitants: 1,860,000 (World Rank 231)
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For Donetsk in Russia, see Donetsk, Russia.
Donetsk (Ukrainian: Донецьк, translit. Donets’k; Russian: Доне́цк, translit. Donetsk; see also: Cities' alternative names), is the large city in Eastern Ukraine on the Kalmius river. Administratively, it is a center of Donetsk Oblast, while historically, it is the unofficial capital and largest city of the economic and cultural Donets Basin (Donbass) region.
The city was founded in 1869 by a Welsh businessman, John Hughes, who constructed a steel plant and several coal mines around the region. Hence the original name Yuzovka (Юзовка). During the Soviet times, the city's steel industry was expanded and it was renamed to Stalino (Сталино). Although there is an opinion that city was named after Joseph Stalin, and hence renamed during the De-Stalinisation to its modern name after the Seversky Donets river. Today, the city still remains an important industrial centre for coal and steel in Ukraine, and houses the "Donetsk" special economic zone, established in 1998.
The city is currently home to two major professional football teams in Ukraine: Shakhtar Donetsk and Metalurh Donetsk, both of which currently play in the Ukrainian Premier League. Important attractions of the city include the Cathedral Transfiguration of Jesus, the Donetsk National University, and others.
Donetsk currently has a population of over 1,100,000 inhabitants (2007) and has a metropolitan area of over 1,566,000 inhabitants (2004). According to the 2001 Ukrainian Census, Donetsk is the fifth-largest city in Ukraine.