Thursday, 17 July 2008

Using Welsh in Europe is to be Made Official

EU says yes to Welsh language
Jul 17 2008 by David Williamson, Western Mail

PERMISSION has been granted for the limited use of the Welsh language in several European Union institutions. Welsh may be used in speeches at the Council of Ministers if translators are available, and may be spoken in the Committee of the Regions if the UK Government makes a request seven weeks in advance.

European legislation, which has been adopted, will also be translated into Welsh. But all costs will be met by the Assembly Government. People wanting to correspond with major EU bodies in Welsh can write to the Welsh Language Board who will arrange for the original letter and the reply to be translated.

Heritage Minister Rhodri Glyn Thomas said: “This is another important milestone for the Welsh language and a very welcome recognition from the EU’s most powerful institution.

“I look forward now to seeing other European Union institutions following the Council’s lead to facilitate a wider use of Welsh.”

Welsh is one of the oldest languages in Europe and has the oldest literary tradition.
Not only that, it is a living and thriving language which is spoken in Wales and Patagonia. Its variant was spoken in Strathclyde and Cumbria, and in Cornwall until the latter part of the 18th Century. Another variant is spoken in Brittany today.
The Breton national anthem shares the same melody with the Welsh anthem "Hen Wlad Fy Nhadau."

Alan in Dyfed

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