Thursday, 31 January 2008

Catalan and the European Union

The European Union is made up of 27 member states, with an aggregate of 23 official and working languages. Catalan is not one of them, although its speakers are granted certain linguistic rights: they may use Catalan in written communication with the Council of the European Union, the Commission, the Economic and Social Committee, the European Parliament and the European Ombudsman, as well as in the Committee of the Regions.

Catalan is spoken in three member states: Spain – in the Balearic Islands, Catalonia, Valencia, Aragon (in La Franja, a strip neighbouring Catalonia) and in Murcia (in the town of el Carxe); France – in the Pyrénées-Orientales department (known as North Catalonia); Italy – in the town of l'Alguer (Alghero). It is also the official language of Andorra, a small non-EU country in the Pyrenees.

However, although spoken by some 9.1 million European citizens the language is not officially recognised by the EU. Does this mean that there are different linguistic rights accorded to different citizens of the EU, depending on their mother tongue? It cannot be argued that this is an issue of economic rationale, that this is a so-called minority language: Catalan is spoken by more European citizens than either Danish, Estonian, Finnish, Irish, Latvian, Lithuanian, Maltese, Slovak or Slovene, and about as many as Bulgarian or Swedish. All of these are recognised official and working languages in the EU, but not Catalan.

This is not democratic: Catalans are not a minority, we are a discriminated, colonised people.

Join the Facebook Cause to Defend Europarl.cat, stop europarl.cat from being closed down and get the official Euro-Parliament website translated into Catala.

3 comments:

reagrupament said...

We are not "discriminated". We are an occupied, colonized country. Our economy is becoming subsidiary to the spanish one, controlled by the right-winged lobby that has been holding the power in spain for centuries. Our culture and national heritage is being minorized following the classical nazi regime's method: repeat a lie until it becomes true. Discrimination is a consequence of this policy.

Nice blog.

YuriBCN said...

I agree and stand corrected.
Thanks for your comment.

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