[lg policy] Moscow: Russian Parliament Welcomes New Language Policy in Ukraine

Harold Schiffman hfsclpp at GMAIL.COM
Thu Jul 5 15:19:49 UTC 2012

Russian Parliament Welcomes New Language Policy in Ukraine
 Jul 4, 2012

The State Duma welcomes the adoption of a Ukrainian bill on the state
language policy fundamentals, which grants the regional language status to
the Russian language, ITAR-TASS reports.

“This step will bring closer together our fraternal peoples and facilitate
the life of millions of our compatriots in Ukraine,” State Duma Committee
on CIS Affairs and Relations with Compatriots Chairman Leonid Slutsky said.

“Russia has always been interested in the maximum high status of the
Russian language which is spoken by millions of our compatriots in
Ukraine,” he said, adding that the language question was “a purely
sovereign affair of Ukraine.”

He welcomed the solution of the language problem with due account of the
opinion of the Ukrainian population.

Now the official status of the Russian language will become “an additional
impetus to Russia-Ukraine relations and integration processes on the
post-Soviet space,”Slutsky said.

“All the Russian-speaking residents in at least half of Ukrainian regions
have been awaiting a solution of the language problem. These regions need
real changes as compared with today’s discriminated status of the Russian
language,” the lawmaker said.

The Ukrainian ruling Party of Regions said it was satisfied with the
Tuesday vote on a bill on the state language policy fundamentals. The bill
was approved by 248 votes.

Opposition deputies had tried to block the adoption of the bill. They
described the initiative of the Party of Regions as an election trick.

The Russian language receives the regional language status in 13 out of 27
Ukrainian regions. The bill reaffirms the status of the Ukrainian language
as the only state language of the country but also broadens rights of
languages of national minorities. For instance, the national minority
language acquires a special status in the region, where the national
minority constitutes over 10% of the total population.

*Russkiy Mir Foundation Information Service*



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