PM Ciolacu: We want same rights for Romanians in Ukraine as Ukrainian minority enjoys in Romania

Prime Minister Marcel Ciolacu told Ukrainian Prime Minister Denys Shmyhal on Friday that the government in Bucharest wants the Romanians in the neighbouring country to enjoy exactly the same rights and freedoms as the Ukrainian minority in Romania.

“On the subject of the rights of persons belonging to the Romanian minority in Ukraine, I have brought to the prime minister’s attention Romania’s legitimate concerns in this area. I recalled Romania’s firm position on this issue. We have shown that we expect openness and involvement from the Ukrainian authorities, as is normal between two states linked by such strong solidarity. Our requests are natural and responsible. We want exactly the same rights and freedoms for Romanians in Ukraine as those enjoyed by the Ukrainian minority in Romania. I am counting on the prime minister’s involvement so that our message reaches all levels of the Ukrainian administration,” Ciolacu said at the Victoria Palace of Government, during joint press statements with his Ukrainian counterpart, who is visiting Bucharest.

According to Prime Minister Ciolacu, the talks also focused on the issue of the so-called Moldovan language.

“We reiterated the Romanian side’s long-standing request that the Ukrainian authorities recognise its non-existence and take all legal and administrative measures accordingly. I recalled that the Republic of Moldova has recently adopted a normative act recognising the official language as Romanian,” said the head of the government in Bucharest.

Ciolacu and Shmyhal also discussed the regional situation.
“We have reviewed the security implications for the Republic of Moldova in the context of the Russian Federation’s challenges in the Black Sea region. We reiterated that the natural place of the Republic of Moldova and Ukraine is in the European family. Romania strongly supports a political decision by the end of this year to open EU accession negotiations with both countries. We also welcomed the results of the NATO Summit in Vilnius, which facilitated the deepening of practical cooperation between Ukraine and NATO,” said Marcel Ciolacu.

He added that Ukraine has strong allies.
“I would like to tell you, Mr. Prime Minister, dear Denys, to keep fighting as you have been fighting. You have strong allies behind you: The United States, NATO and the European Union, and neighbours like Romania, on whom you can always rely in time of need. You have no reason to take a step back and I am convinced that, in the end, overcoming this dark moment of history, you will succeed in building a more secure and prosperous future,” said prime minister Ciolacu.