Press Room

Minister Teodor Melescanu on a visit to Chernivtsi: "Until concrete solutions are identified, Romania will keep the subject of the Education Law on the agenda of the bilateral talks"

Press release

On 11 January 2018, Minister of Foreign Affairs Teodor Melescanu paid a working visit to Chernivtsi, Ukraine. The travel agenda included a meeting with Ukrainian counterpart Pavlo Klimkin, followed by a joint press release by the two officials.

In his statement in Chernivtsi, the head of the Romanian diplomacy pointed out the main elements addressed during the meeting with the Ukrainian side, a special significance being given to the problems of the Romanian minority in Ukraine, with an emphasis on the Ukrainian Law of Education. Minister Teodor Melescanu stressed the constant concern for protecting and promoting the rights of the people belonging to the Romanian minority in Ukraine, including by keeping the subject of the Ukrainian Education Act on the agenda of the bilateral talks and the diplomatic actions taken in this regard. He conveyed to the Ukrainian counterpart that the Romanian side expects to find sustainable solutions that would meet the legitimate interest of the Romanian minority in Ukraine to benefit from the exercise of the right to education in the mother tongue at all levels of education. He also showed the Romanian side's willingness to provide expertise in providing education in the mother tongue for persons belonging to national minorities.

"Romania maintains its assessment that Article 7 of the Law on Education, in its present wording, has a negative impact on the right to education in the mother tongue for persons belonging to the Romanian minority and, in general, those whose mother tongue is Romanian. We discussed with Minister Klimkin on the Venice Commission Opinion and reminded that in the bilateral talks so far, including the high-level bilateral talks, the Ukrainian side has promised to take over the recommendations of the Venice Commission in its domestic legislation. Romania is ready to share its experience in terms of education in the mother tongue, while ensuring the knowledge of the Romanian language. Romania is an example in this respect, "said the Romanian Foreign Affairs Minister.

The head of the Romanian diplomacy emphasized that the Bucharest authorities have full understanding of the concern expressed by the representatives of the Romanian minority in Ukraine about the adoption of the Ukrainian Education Law, stating that in order to find a viable solution, a sustained dialogue is necessary and the constant association of the representatives of national minorities to the decisions of the Ukrainian authorities that directly concern them.

At the same time, in the extended discussions attended by the Romanian education minister Liviu Pop and his Ukrainian counterpart Lilia Grinevici, the two sides agreed to start negotiations on the Protocol of collaboration between the Romanian Ministry of Education and the Ministry of Education and Science in Ukraine for the period 2017 - 2020. The document will include provisions on the mutual guarantee of linguistic rights of national minorities related in the territory of each state.

In the context of bilateral talks, other topics of interest were discussed, including from the point of view of bringing Ukraine closer to the European structures and Romania's support in this respect, as well as the security developments in the region.

On the occasion of the visit to Ukraine, Minister Teodor Melescanu met with representatives of the Romanian minority from the Chernivtsi region, attended the inauguration ceremony of the Romanian language teaching school in Iordanesti and visited the "Mihai Eminescu" high school with teaching in Romanian from the locality Carapciv, Hliboka district. He also deposited, together with Minister Pavlo Klimkin, wreaths at the Chernivtsi monuments of Mihai Eminescu and Taras Sevcenko.


Photos from the event are available on the link: