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Russian tongue should be recognised as one of official EU languages

September 18, 2011, 14:34 UTC+3

This conclusion was made by participants in “the Russian Forum”, held at the Russian embassy in Paris on Saturday

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PARIS, September 18 (Itar-Tass) — The Russian language should be recognised as one of official languages of the European Union. This conclusion was made by participants in “the Russian Forum”, held at the Russian embassy in Paris on Saturday.

This conference drew for the first time here all organisations of the Russian diaspora in France.

Rector of the Paris Russian Conservatory named after Rakhmaninov Pyotr Sheremetev backed the idea of recognising an international status of the Russian language in the EU. “I fully join this proposal,” he said in an interview with Itar-Tass. “This will help to develop the Pan-European cultural and economic space.” He noted that the number of Russian-language speakers in the world tops 300 million people, including in EU countries – over six millions.

The conference, attended by 177 representatives from various spheres of public life from the capital and leading French regions, put forth the task of the broadest possible studies of the Russian language in the country. For this purpose, it is planned to organise a symposium on methods of its teaching in the French medium.

Russian Ambassador in Paris Alexander Orlov noted that the next year would be the Year of the Russian Language in France. He noted that “propagation of the native tongue and culture is a task, uniting all waves of the Russian emigration”.

The forum requested the French Supreme Council of Audio-Visual Information to allocate frequencies in the UHF band to broadcast in Russian. Such radio station addresses its programmes to the Russian-speaking audiences in France – representatives of Russian, Georgian, Ukrainian, Moldovan, Armenian and Baltic communities.

According to the authors of the address, it was prompted not only by common interests, but also by the desire to present the European continent in France in all its multiformity in the epoch of globalisation. Radio programmes will include political, economic and especially cultural news of the French Republic, the Russian Federation and other European countries.

The same aim will be also met by the establishment of a magazine of the intellectual-spiritual trend in line with traditions, inculcated by the Russkaya Mysl newspaper and other publications by emigration groups.

A ranking official of the Russian Foreign Ministry, Alexander Chepurin, told Itar-Tass that “proposals, made at the forum in Paris will be examined at the International Conference on a status of the Russian language”. It will be held in Moscow on October 17-18.

Participants in “the Russian Forum” elected the Coordination Council, consisting of 17 people. In the opinion of deputy head of the Rossotrudnichestvo organisation Georgy Muradov, it is called upon to be a link between the associations themselves as well as Russian structures, responsible for contacts with compatriots.

The Paris “Russian Forum” has become history’s first conference of representatives of all organisations of the Russian diaspora in France. The forum noted that the post-revolutionary emigrants, taking into account following waves, totalled 400,000 people. Many organisations and unions, founded by first emigrants, operate here up to this time.

Chairman of the Coordination Council of compatriots in France Dmitry de Koshko thanked representatives of the Russian Foreign Ministry, the Rossotrudnichestvo organisation and the Russian embassy in Paris for conditions, created for successful work of the conference. Executives of the embassy and its consular department replied in detail to numerous questions of conference participants, connected with visa and notary practices.

“Our forum, uniting various waves of emigration showed that we can work together,” de Koshko said in an interview with Itar-Tass. ”It will be held annually on a decision of the Coordination Council.”


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