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7th February, 2018

Ukraine to delay new language law

The Ukrainian education ministry has agreed to extend until 2023 the transition period for adopting the new education law related to national minorities, as recommended by the Venice Commission.

Education Minister Lilia Hrynevych made the announcement at a Monday evening meeting with the Romanian ambassador.

Hrynevych stressed in a press statement that the ministry is not extending the transition period because of the foreign response to the law, but to make sure that all Ukrainian children – regardless of nationality and address – be able to master Ukrainian at a high level.

Hungary and Romania have vehemently objected to the provision that ethnic minority children may study in their native language for the first four years of schooling only, with subjects to be taught in Ukrainian from the fifth grade onwards.

This provision was due to enter into force from September 2020.

Sources regularly consulted, with abbreviations used in text: Népszabadság (N); Magyar Hírlap (MH); Világgazdaság (VG); Napi Gazdaság (NG); Magyar Nemzet (MN); Népszava (Nsz); Kossuth Rádió news (KR); nightly TV news (TV).

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