You are here

On January 18, 2024, a meeting of the committee of experts of the European Charter for Regional or Minority Languages took place at the Palace of Navarre in Iruña/Pamplona, with the experts visiting Spain to analyze the compliance report of the sixth evaluation cycle (2017-2021) presented by the Kingdom of Spain.

The European Charter for Regional or Minority Languages is an instrument promoted by the Council of Europe that supports the normalization of minority languages and defends their rights. The Kingdom of Spain signed its accession to the Charter in 2001, and since then, there have been five evaluations of the mandatory reports, with the analysis of the sixth currently underway. In each evaluation, a committee of experts travels to the Spanish State to meet with political representatives and non-public associative and institutional entities working on the development of minority languages. In all these visits, the Aurten Bai Foundation has participated in the meetings, as in all previous evaluations, including this sixth one, the Aurten Bai Foundation has issued a report expressing its opinion on Spain's compliance with the obligations of the European Charter for Regional or Minority Languages..

In the meeting presided over by Maxime Huot, the administrator of matters related to the Charter at the Council of Europe, the representative of the Aurten Bai Foundation, its president Mikel Etxebarria, made it clear that the Spanish State does not meet the commitments made when signing the Charter. He stated that the Central Government continues to have a problem of insufficient recognition of the plurilingual reality of the State and must undertake significant awareness-raising work among the Spanish population, especially in territories without an official language, to appreciate the cultural richness that these co-official languages represent. It cannot be that a significant part of Spanish society sees this linguistic and cultural diversity as a problem or an unsustainable economic cost rather than cultural wealth. He also emphasized the necessary improvements to be made by the Central Government in aspects related to the use of Basque in justice and in the peripheral administration of the State, while urging the Basque Government to enhance the presence of Basque in the regional police and in the Osakidetza health service. The complete report, as well as summaries, is available on the Aurten Bai Foundation's website.