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Zelenskyy signs amendments to law on national minorities

Friday, 8 December 2023, 19:38
Zelenskyy signs amendments to law on national minorities

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy signed Law No 10288-1 On Amendments to Legislation on National Minorities on 8 December. The amendments take into account the recommendations of the European Commission and are necessary for further progress towards EU membership.

Source: European Pravda; the law on the website of Verkhovna Rada (Ukrainian Parliament)

Zelenskyy signed the law on the same day that it was approved by the Verkhovna Rada as a basis and in general. The law is necessary to take into account the expert assessment of the Council of Europe and to meet the European Commission's criterion for opening EU accession negotiations.


The amendments provide for the following:

  • private universities can freely choose the language of education among official EU languages, if they also teach Ukrainian as a separate discipline;
  • classes being taught in languages of national minorities that are official languages of the EU, the right to use the national minority language in the educational process alongside the state language is guaranteed;
  • representatives of national minorities of Ukraine whose languages are official languages of the EU and who started school before 1 September 2018 in the language of their minority may study in primary and secondary schools in accordance with the rules that were in force before the Law of Ukraine On Supporting the Functioning of the Ukrainian Language as the State Language came into force.

Committee member Volodymyr Viatrovych, a co-author of the bill, stated that all the innovations would not apply to Russian as the language of the aggressor state, "and not for 5 years, as the government planned, but permanently".

Olha Stefanishyna, Ukraine's Deputy Prime Minister for European and Euro-Atlantic Integration, stated that the bill would contain additional safeguards to prevent the infiltration of Russian narratives and propaganda. 

The official also said that the new bill aimed at protecting national minorities does not provide for the expansion of opportunities for the Russian language.

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