Accessibility links

Breaking News

OSCE Head Says Minorities Should Learn State Language

DUSHANBE -- Knut Vollebaek, the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe's high commissioner on national minorities, says that minorities in all OSCE member states should learn the state language in order to avoid conflicts and to participate in state affairs, RFE/RL's Tajik Service reports.

Vollebaek reiterated the OSCE's commitment to special programs for ethnic minorities in Central Asia while meeting with Tajik officials in Dushanbe on June 4.

Tajikistan's population of 7 million includes 950,000 ethnic Uzbeks and 65,000 ethnic Kyrgyz, the country’s two largest minorities.

Tajik officials say Tajikistan respects the rights of all ethnic minorities.

Viktor Kim, who represents Tajikistan's Korean community of some 1,700, told RFE/RL that it would be useful to have resources for minority communities to organize events, and to be able to study their native languages along with Tajik while freely practicing their cultural traditions.