Good day to you from Kyiv,

Today we have a nice variety of positive stories from Ukraine’s cinematography, postal services, and travel updates. We also look at some tragic events that happened in Kyiv and eastern Ukraine.

Cool news:

  1. The fires in Ukraine’s eastern Luhansk region have finally been fully put out on July 13, a week after they started. The blazes affected around 90 hectares of land and killed 5 people. Three possible reasons are being considered for the fire: weather conditions, fire safety guidelines not being followed, or willful arson. Another possible reason that is being considered is an incendiary device being shot from occupied territory.
  2. Get your party socks on! Because while it may still be unsafe to visit nightclubs, dance parties with your household members at the premises of your own home are a fun way to brighten up your quarantine. And what excuse not to dance can you now have with Spotify finally entering Ukraine!
  3. People in Ukraine can now holiday in Egypt or Albania without the requirement of having to self-isolate there or back here, upon arrival.
  4. A Ukrainian film Vacuum has won an award at the International Film Festival in Karlovy Vary, Czech Republic.
  5. Speaking of films, “My thoughts are silent” will be available for streaming on HBO Europe from this autumn.
  6. Missing a relative or a close one who’s too far away to visit during the lockdown? You can now send them a letter with a fragrant postage stamp as Ukrposhta (Ukraine’s national postal service provider) launches stamps that smell of different flowers. The options currently available – and that were designed by artist Natalia Kokhal – are jasmine and lavender. More information here.

Uncool news:

  1. A military medic has been killed in the Donbas by Russia-backed separatists. He is currently believed to be an Estonian, but Ukraine has not confirmed this yet. Ukrainian resident Volodymyr Zelenskyy said he’s controlling the situation personally
  2. A family of two adults and two children has died as a result of a drunk man driving into the opposite lane and colliding with the car that had the said family in. This happened 5 km away from Kyiv on July 13, just 11 days after President Zelenskyy cancelled criminal responsibility for driving under influence. Another child who was also in the car is currently hospitalised with injuries sustained.
  3. It looks like people living in Ukraine won’t be able to go to the European Union soon as, according to Ukraine’s health ministry, Ukraine needs to have no more than 460-480 new daily coronavirus cases for at least two weeks to qualify for tourist entries to the EU. In reality, Ukraine has been having around 600-900 new cases every day for the past fortnight, almost twice as much as required.
  4. A rubbish bin exploded in Kyiv, outside of the Shuliavska metro station on the evening of July 17, injuring four people. One man, who suffered the most, was hospitalised and underwent surgery. The other three victims seem to have only sustained minor injuries and are feeling well.
  5. It is currently unclear for how much longer the quarantine will last in Ukraine. The health ministry and some state services are calling on a much longer extension (even possibly until 2021), but Zelenskyy has asked not to rush with the longer extensions of the lockdown because “everyone is tired of it.”