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June 24, 2021

President Iohannis: Romanian-language education at the center of talks with Ukraine’s Poroshenko

President Klaus Iohannis said on Friday that he and his Ukrainian counterpart Petro Poroshenko discussed Romanian-language education in Ukraine, mentioning that an evolution is possible towards a solution to this issue.

“We had a bilateral meeting, and of course I immediately raised the topic of Romanian-language education for Ukraine’s Romanian community as the central subject of the discussion. You know an entire debate is rolling on in connection with the new law on education approved by Ukraine’s Parliament. In connection with this, I told President Poroshenko that to us this is a an extremely important subject and that we need to find a solution. He promised me that he will take into consideration all the recommendations that will come from the Venice Commission to amend the legislation accordingly, and a second very firm request of mine was for the amendments concerning Romanian-language education to be discussed before they are transposed into the law, both in a bilateral format – that is with us, the representatives of the Romanian state – as well as with the representatives of the Romanian minority in Ukraine. President Poroshenko accepted both requests and I think this suggests an evolution towards a solution,” the Romanian head of state said after his bilateral meeting with the President of Ukraine on the sidelines of the Eastern Partnership Summit.

Iohannis pointed out that a presidential visit to Ukraine would be discussed only after the issue of Romanian-language education is settled.

“To keep all ambiguity at bay, I postponed my visit [to Ukraine] in order to trigger a very serious and strong alarm signal that this is a highly serious subject to us, but obviously myself and others continue negotiations to solve this problem. Let nobody imagine that we are now playing bitter and no longer talk. This is not so, we talk, we have common projects, but such is the importance of this topic to us that we put other actions in stand-by until we sort this one out,” the head of state added.

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