First Deputy Minister of Culture of Ukraine Svitlana Fomenko met with OSCE High Commissioner on National Minorities Lamberto Zannier and his office staff.
During the meeting, the parties discussed issues related to the work of intergovernmental commissions, legislative work and drafting acts aimed to protect the rights of national minorities in Ukraine.
In particular, there was considered the issue of the elaboration of the draft Concept of State Ethnic Policy, which is currently under expert discussion both in the professional environment with the participation of international experts in the sector of ethnic policy, and with representatives of national communities of Ukraine.
The First Deputy Minister of Culture of Ukraine noted that Ukraine represents itself and established as a state with a high level of tolerance and international mutual respect, and strictly adheres to the fulfillment of its obligations assumed under both national and international law. The Ministry implements all the necessary measures to ensure the rights of national minorities living in Ukraine.
Lamberto Zannier, in turn, expressed readiness to consider the proposals of the Ukrainian side for further cooperation and use of the opportunities and tools provided for by the mandate of the OSCE High Commissioner on National Minorities to provide expert assessment in the context of drafting legislation that concern the rights of national minorities in Ukraine.
During the meeting, the issues of the activities of educational institutions in Ukraine with teaching in the language of national minorities were also discussed. It was also emphasized on the necessity of a thorough improvement of the state of ensuring the rights of the Ukrainian national minority in learning their mother tongue in neighboring countries, including those being members of the European Union, and, in particular, the situation with violation of the rights of Ukrainians in the annexed Crimea.
Special attention of the participants of the meeting was paid to the issue of establishing the Local Orthodox Church in Ukraine and granting it the Tomos of Autocephaly of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church by the Ecumenical Patriarch. The OSCE High Commissioner on National Minorities was informed about the state of the preparation process for such an important event in the history of our country.