Intergroup: linguistic discrimination against regional languages in France

The Intergroup welcomed the Breton NGO Kevre Breizh and EBLUL France for its July meeting. Discussion focused on the appalling level of discrimination faced by regional language speakers in a state that is, the last in western Europe not to give any recognition or support to its regional languages.

The meeting also heard about Friday’s meeting of the new EU level lesser used language network, with a remit to campaign for linguistic rights. Davyth Hicks announced that the new network will meet on Friday (July 8th), comprising language NGOs from across Europe including former EBLUL Member State Committees, and with the Council of Europe in attendance. He said that it will work for the promotion and protection of lesser used languages, prioritise linguistic rights, and act to support ‘regional’ languages in the French state as well as other urgent cases.

On a separate item the former Slovene Prime Minister Alojz Peterle MEP discussed the vote in the Austrian Parliament which, while allowing for a compromise over bilingual signage, has resulted in cutting the direct access of national minorities to the Constitutional Court.