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Letter to UEFA


Fax: +41 848 01 2727, +41 848 01 2525, +380 44 522 85 13, +44 207 745 4546, +48 22 551 2240

Subject: Name of Ukrainian cities

Dear Madam / Sir,

Let me bring your attention to the fact that misspells the names of Ukrainian cities.

I would like to bring your attention to the fact that your website [] misspells names of Ukrainian cities. This letter is to request UEFA to correct English versions of the names of all Ukrainian cities and towns.

The capital of Ukraine in English is Kyiv not Kiev. Kiev was only used during the Soviet times. To write Kiev is old-fashioned at least, if not against the will of the Ukrainian as well as the US and other governments. Lvov is Lviv and was always Lviv as the matter of fact. One also writes Kharkiv, not Kharkov anymore.

This has been already reviewed by the Ukrainian and Western governments, recognised by the UN, the US, Ukrainian, British, Australian and other English speaking countries and authorities. This is how these cities call themselves in English.

In case UEFA is not aware of it, National Geographic noted the return to proper spellings of Ukrainian cities back in 1992. The Ukrainian government officially recognized them more than a decade ago. Most Western governments have long switched to these spellings, including the United States, Canada, the United Kingdom and other English-language countries. So has the United Nations Organization.

UEFA would not write “Bombay”, “Peking” or “Leningrad” today, so it should show equal respect for Ukraine and the official spellings of its cities’ names in English.

There are many reasons why the capital of Ukraine is spelled Kyiv in English:

  • United Nations Multilingual Terminology Database (the ultimate body on geographical names) approved it as Kyiv
  • CIA refers to the city as Kyiv
  • And many more …

You can find more reasons, background information and evidences on

Again, I kindly ask you to adopt the official spellings of the names of Ukraine’s cities.

Thank you very much for your consideration and support on this matter.

Sincerely yours,

[See the complete list of those signed on the petition site]

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Posted in Call for action, Companies, Letters. Tagged with .

7 Responses

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  1. Kyivite said

    Few more good reasons would be to mention that big names go for Kyiv. E.g., the biggest mobile operator in the country. It is trademarked as KyivStar not KievStar.

    Also look for site like etc – Kyiv it is indeed.

  2. Marko said

    Another good one is the best English newspaper in the country: “Kyiv Post” of course.

  3. Marko said

    In fact, UEFA already spells the names correctly throughout their site:

    FC Dynamo Kyiv
    FC Shakhtar Donetsk
    FC Metalist Kharkiv
    SC Tavriya Simferopol
    FC Arsenal Kyiv
    FC Dnipro Dnipropetrovsk
    FC Karpaty Lviv
    FC Obolon Kyiv
    FC Illychivets Mariupil
    FC Vorskla Poltava
    FC Metallurh Donetsk
    FC Metallurh Zaporizhya
    FC Zorya Luhansk
    FC Kryvbas Kryvyi Rih
    FC Zakarpattya Uzhhorod
    FC Chornomorets Odesa

    It is just that those city pages need to be updated.

  4. Lara said

    They could certainly do better, especially on Zaporizhya and Simferopol too.

    Everyone knows it is Zaporizhzhya – though this spelling makes it practically unpronouncable in English 😉

  5. Marko said

    Читав зранку за сніданком “Тиждень” і перщим про що подумав, що треба буде зі всіх сил прослідкувати, що під час Євро-2012 всі українські міста писатимуться правильно.

    В червні ми з друзями закидали факсами офіси УЄФА і вони виправилися. Це добре. Головне не пропустити момент. Момент, коли у фіналі спроектуємо Kyiv на цілий світ. Кращої рекламної кампанії не придумати. Не можна допуститися ні найменшої помилки. Занадто важливий момент.