Chisinau is the capital and largest city in Moldova. Boasting the highest standard of living in the country Chisinau is also the economic, educational, and cultural center of Moldova. This city is located in the center of the country, on the Bīc River and has one of the higest number of green spaces in all European capitals.
Founded in 1436 as a monastery town for the Moldavian Principality the city and the country soon fell under the power of the Ottoman Empire in the 16th century and then the Russian's in the 19th. The Moldovian's gained there independence after the October Revolution in Russia and joined the Kingdom of Romania as an autonomous state, during this time Chisinau lost its status as capital and lost much of its importance. World War II saw the city nearly destroyed due to an earthquake, Red Army occupation, heavy bombing by the Nazi's, and Nazi occupation. During the Nazi occupation much of the large Jewish population of the city was brutally massacred until the city was again claimed by the Red Army and eventually turned into the capital of the USSR's Bessarabia, part of the Moldavian SSR, and Chisinau was renamed Khisinev. In 1991 Moldova gained its independence.
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