MINELRES: BalkanHR: Serbia: Council of Europe publishes report on minority languages in Croatia

minelres@lists.microlink.lv minelres@lists.microlink.lv
Sat Sep 10 13:15:41 2005

Original sender: Greek Helsinki Monitor <office@greekhelsinki.gr>

Strasbourg, 08.09.2005 - A new Council of Europe report warns of a
worrying decline in the number of speakers of all minority languages in

Croatian speakers are now more tolerant of minority languages - but the
overall culture of Croatia does not show enough respect for them, says
the report. It also pinpoints a special problem with the Serbian

At the same time the report - which has been made public today by the
Council of Europe Committee of Ministers - welcomes new laws to protect
linguistic minorities in Croatia, although it points out that some
provisions may still lead to restrictions incompatible with the Charter.

The report has been drawn up by a committee of independent experts for
the second evaluation of Croatia's application of  the European Charter
for Regional and Minority languages.  Its recommendations, endorsed by
the Committee of Ministers, include a coherent strategy for teacher
training, adequate teaching materials for minority language education,
increasing the presence of minority languages on television, and
ensuring that regional or minority languages are used for public
services, where appropriate.  It also calls for all relevant place names
to be used bilingually, and for some of the local authorities concerned
to drop their reluctance to grant protection to minority languages.

The text of the report and recommendation can be downloaded from the
Charter's website: http://www.coe.int/minlang ("Reports and
Recommendations" section).

Further information can be found on the Charter's website, or by
contacting the Charter Secretariat at the Council of Europe in
Strasbourg (Directorate of Co-operation for Local and Regional
Democracy, DG I - Legal Affairs, F-67075 Strasbourg, 
tel: +33 (0)3 88 41 22 66).

Press Release
Council of Europe Press Division
Ref: 453a05
Tel: +33 (0)3 88 41 25 60
Fax:+33 (0)3 88 41 39 11
internet: www.coe.int/press

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