The foreign Ministry praised the position of the Venice Commission on language reform in Latvia

The experts of the Venice Commission of the Council of Europe has demonstrated a biased position in their assessment of the Latvian law on education in minority languages, said the official representative of Russian foreign Ministry Maria Zakharova.

The Committee of the parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe for equality and non-discrimination in December, asked the Venice Commission assessment of the Latvian law on education in languages of national minorities. The Venice Commission as an expert body of the Council of Europe, considering the conformity of national legislation with the principles of democracy and human rights. The Commission has published an evaluation of language reforms in education in Latvia, proposing to save the group with the Russian language in kindergartens and also give you the freedom to choose the language of instruction in private higher education institutions and schools in the country.

"Unfortunately, the experts of the Venice Commission, mainly representing the member countries of the EU, demonstrated a biased position, actually supported the policy of Latvia, aimed at the forced de-Russification of the country, violation of the linguistic and educational rights of the living there are Russian-speaking community," Zakharova said at the briefing.

According to her, a special surprise is the attempt by the Commission to justify the discrimination of the Russian language in Latvia in relation to the languages of other minorities.

"We are convinced that membership of any country in the EU does not justify the creation of so-called elite club, which guarantees the rights of certain persons by usemine other. We urge Riga to stick to the universal and regional norms and mechanisms in the field of protection of the rights of national minorities, adopted in the framework of the UN, Council of Europe, OSCE", - said Zakharov.

Previously, the diet of Latvia forbade the teaching in private universities in non-Latvian language. In Latvia one state language – Latvian. Russian which is native for 40% of the population, has the status of foreign. In Latvia there are several large private universities, in which teaching is carried out, including in Russian.