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MFA of Russia comments on adoption of state language law by Kyrgyzstan

«Russia expects Kyrgyzstan to pursue a balanced language policy,» the Russian Foreign Affairs Ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova said.

She commented on the adoption by the Parliament of Kyrgyzstan of the draft law on the state language.

The official noted that the draft law was submitted for discussion back in 2021, and then its original version was followed by critical reviews in the Kyrgyz society, including from the Russian-speaking population of the republic.

«Later, the document was finalized, new provisions were introduced into it, for example, on guarantees to all ethnic groups for the preservation and development of their native language. At the same time, the bill does not include a provision on prevention of infringement of the rights and freedoms of citizens on the basis of ignorance of the state language. In its current form, the law is capable of creating certain difficulties for citizens of the country who do not speak the Kyrgyz language. We have repeatedly drawn the attention of our Kyrgyz colleagues to the fact that the adoption of the document may have an undesirable impact on the situation with the rights of the non-titular population, including our compatriots,» she stressed.

Maria Zakharova added that the authorities of the Kyrgyz Republic had previously assured the Kremlin that the bill did not aim to abolish the Russian language. «In this regard, we expect that the leadership of Kyrgyzstan, in the spirit of our allied relations, will pursue a balanced language policy aimed both at developing the Kyrgyz language and at supporting and promoting Russian, which has the constitutional status of official in the republic and is the language of interethnic communication in the vast expanse of the CIS,» she noted.

The draft law on the state language establishes the legal framework for the use of the Kyrgyz language, the implementation of language policy, obligations of state bodies and local government bodies in creating conditions for their development.

A list of persons who are required to speak the state language and use it in the performance of their official duties has been determined. These are state and municipal employees, deputies, military, judges, heads and employees of educational institutions of all forms of ownership, state and municipal health care institutions, teachers and scientists, and others.