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European Charter for Regional or Minority Languages

The European Charter for Regional and Minority Languages was adopted by the Committee of Ministers of the Council of Europe on 2 October 1992 and opened for signature on 5 November 1992. It represents the final product of a project which had been under consideration since 1988. The Charter entered into force on 1 March 1998. Its aims are to protect and promote the historical regional or minority languages of Europe, to maintain and develop Europe's cultural traditions and heritage, and to respect the right to use a regional or minority language in private and public life.

As of 23 September 2002, 29 states had signed the Charter and the following 17 countries had ratified it: Armenia, Austria, Croatia, Cyprus, Denmark, Finland, Germany, Hungary, Liechtenstein, Netherlands, Norway, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland and the United Kingdom.

Source: ETS No. 148. The full text of the European Charter for Regional or Minority Languages and information about signatures and ratifications can be found on the Council of Europe website at: http://conventions.coe.int/Treaty/EN/CadreListeTraites.htm


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