DISINFO: The language law signed by Poroshenko is a huge, unjustified bomb that splits Ukrainian society
DISINFORMATION CASE DETAILS
  • Outlet: russian.rt.com (archived)*
  • Date of publication: May 21, 2019
  • Outlet language(s): Russian
  • Reported in: Issue 150
  • Countries / regions discussed: Ukraine
Tags:
Volodymyr Zelensky Ukraine Rule of law Russian language Petro Poroshenko

DISINFO: The language law signed by Poroshenko is a huge, unjustified bomb that splits Ukrainian society

SUMMARY

The language law signed by Poroshenko is a huge, unjustified bomb that splits Ukrainian society and makes it very difficult for Zelenskyi to take office, because he will have to react to it somehow.

RESPONSE

Recurring pro-Kremlin disinformation narrative about Ukraine and discrimination against Russian speakers. Find more disinformation cases on the Ukrainian language law here.

On 25 April, The Verkhovna Rada passed the law "on ensuring the functioning of the Ukrainian language as a state language". The law establishes mandatory use of the Ukrainian language in most areas of public and communal life, including the mass media.

However, the language rights of national minorities have to be in line with the obligations of Ukraine under the European Charter for Regional Languages and Languages of National Minorities, guaranteed by a separate law, the draft of which the government must develop and submit to the parliament six months after the law on the state language will enter into force.

The usage of Russian language is not limited in private communication and religious ceremonies. Just like the languages ​​of other minorities, Russian can be present in book publishing, the press, television and education and in the service sector. But the Ukrainian language in these areas is preferred.. the Ukrainian language is positioned as the main language of publishing activity, and circulation in other languages ​​can not exceed the circulation in Ukrainian.

For discrimination of the Ukrainian language, including in favour of Russian, administrative responsibility is given. In the humanitarian sphere - education, science, culture, sports - for violating language policy, there is a fine of 200 to 300 times the non-taxable minimum wage (now it is from 3400-5100 hryvnias). The entry into force is delayed for three years.

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Cases in the EUvsDisinfo database focus on messages in the international information space that are identified as providing a partial, distorted, or false depiction of reality and spread key pro-Kremlin messages. This does not necessarily imply, however, that a given outlet is linked to the Kremlin or editorially pro-Kremlin, or that it has intentionally sought to disinform. EUvsDisinfo publications do not represent an official EU position, as the information and opinions expressed are based on media reporting and analysis of the East Stratcom Task Force.

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