Statement of the Spokesman of the MFA on the cancellation of the law on state language policy by the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine on 23 February 2014

On 23 February 2014 the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine cancelled the law “On State Language Policy”. The law allowed the local councils to confer the status of a regional language to the minority languages, if a minority group makes up more than 10% of the residents. In accordance with this law, in some regions of Bessarabia, which are home to compact Bulgarian Communities (Artsiz, Izmail, Bolgrad),  the Bulgarian language was adopted as regional.

In connection with the cancellation of the law, the Minister of Foreign Affairs Kristian Vigenin held immediate talks with the Ambassador of Ukraine to Sofia and with Bulgaria's Ambassador to Kiev. Minister Vigenin raised the topic also at today's meeting in Budapest of the Foreign Ministers of the Visegrad Group, Bulgaria, Romania and Greece, on which all the  participants agreed that this is a step in the wrong direction. The current political leaders in Ukraine must demonstrate responsibility and strive for inclusion of all groups in the Ukrainian society with respect for human rights and the rule of law.

The issue will be raised again from the Bulgarian side immediately after the formation of a new government in Ukraine, especially considering that the particular law was passed in 2012 in response to the commitments made to the Council of Europe.

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 Държавна агенция за българите в чужбина