Committee of Ministers of the Council of Europe resolution on the implementation of the Framework Convention for the Protection of National Minorities by Latvia - News of the Permanent Representation of the Russian Federation to the Council of Europe
Committee of Ministers of the Council of Europe resolution on the implementation of the Framework Convention for the Protection of National Minorities by Latvia
From the briefing by Foreign Ministry Spokeswoman Maria Zakharova, Moscow, March 12, 2021
On March 3, the Committee of Ministers of the Council of Europe adopted a resolution on the implementation of the Framework Convention for the Protection of National Minorities by Latvia.
The document notes that the Latvian authorities are not fully delivering on their obligations. This concerns, first, restrictions on receiving an education in a minority language, violating the rights of the non-Latvian population to full participation in the country’s cultural, economic, social and political life, and the prohibition of using national minority languages in dealings with regional and administrative authorities.
In this connection, immediate action is needed to rectify the situation. In part, the following recommendations should be considered:
- promote the integration of society as a whole with an understanding that the process is not limited to the promotion of proficiency in the state language;
- ensure the continued availability of teaching and learning in the languages of national minorities throughout the country with a view to meeting existing demand;
- ensure the inclusion of national minorities in decision making;
- combat stereotypes and prejudices in political discourse and counteract manifestations of xenophobia in society;
- reconsider the approach to the quota requirements in the broadcast media and pursue efforts to promote the state language through incentive-based methods rather than through the imposition of language bans.
We note that the above approach and the qualifications of the Council of Ministers are consonant with Russia’s assessments of Riga’s comprehensive violations of the rights of Russian speaking citizens.
We hope the Latvian authorities will heed these recommendations and will bring their policy in line with their international commitments.
For our part, we would like to emphasise that protection of the rights of our compatriots and, generally, Russian-speaking citizens in the Baltic states and Ukraine remain a priority of Russian foreign policy.