Natalia Volkova: Language discrimination in Ukraine soars to new heights

The Ukrainian authorities put knowledge of the Ukrainian language above professional skills, which may lead to personnel disaster in many areas, including medicine. This was stated in an interview with the Donetsk News Agency by the DPR People’s Council MP, the chairman of the Education, Science and Culture Committee, Natalia Volkova.

The parliamentarian expressed her opinion in due to the decision of the Cabinet of Ministers of Ukraine to create a commission on state language standards, which would also check the level of proficiency in the Ukrainian language in order to obtain country’s citizenship to occupy positions prescribed by law.

“Language discrimination in Ukraine is soaring new heights. This is done from simple powerlessness. Attempts to impose a foreign culture on the people of the Russian world were unsuccessful, now the Ukrainian government will force people to speak the “right” language through law. Thus, the country continues to divide the population into friends and foes.

As this law on ensuring the functioning of the Ukrainian language enters into force, judges, teachers and health workers are required to speak exclusively Ukrainian in the public space. This means that now the main criterion for the professional suitability of a doctor is not their education and professional skills, but the ability to fluently speak the state language of Ukraine. I’m too scared to imagine what such a policy can lead to,” Natalia Volkova noted.

The MP also added that since 2020, in all schools of the country, including the Donbass territory controlled by Kiev, where the vast majority of the population is Russian-speaking, teaching will be conducted exclusively in Ukrainian. But the Ukrainian government ignores this fact and continues forced Ukrainization, neglecting the rights and freedoms of its citizens.

“Most of Ukraine speaks and, most importantly, thinks in Russian. And for a person, the native language is not just a set of words, but a way of knowing and conceptualizing the surrounding world. To deprive a person of the opportunity to utilise their native language means depriving them of the most important trait, by which people determine their identity,” the deputy concluded.

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