Last Updated: Friday, 27 May 2016, 08:49 GMT

Controversial language bill signed by Ukraine's parliament speaker

Publisher Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty
Publication Date 31 July 2012
Cite as Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty, Controversial language bill signed by Ukraine's parliament speaker, 31 July 2012, available at: [accessed 27 May 2016]
DisclaimerThis is not a UNHCR publication. UNHCR is not responsible for, nor does it necessarily endorse, its content. Any views expressed are solely those of the author or publisher and do not necessarily reflect those of UNHCR, the United Nations or its Member States.

July 31, 2012

The Ukrainian parliament's press service has announced that a controversial language bill that gives Russian the status of "a regional language" in 13 of Ukraine's 27 regions has been signed by the speaker.

The law will come into effect now after President Viktor Yanukovych signs it.

Lawmakers approved the law on July 3.

Speaker Volodymyr Lytvyn had refused to sign it and asked parliament to free him from his duties as part of a protest against the legislation.

Parliament rejected Lytvyn's request and four separate proposals from the opposition to amend the bill on July 30.

The bill's adoption led to scuffles among lawmakers and mass protests in Kyiv and other cities.

The law also gives the status of "regional language" to Crimean Tatar in Crimea, Romanian in the Chernivtsi region, and Hungarian in the Zakarpattya region.

Based on reporting by UNIAN and Interfax

Link to original story on RFE/RL website

Copyright notice: Copyright (c) 2007-2009. RFE/RL, Inc. Reprinted with the permission of Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty, 1201 Connecticut Ave., N.W. Washington DC 20036

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