Russian becomes regional language in Kherson

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Aug. 21, 2012, 7:06 p.m. | Ukraine — by Interfax-Ukraine

An opposition member of the Ukrainian parliament sits next to huge Ukrainian flags decorating the sits of the opposition deputies who left the parliament session to protest against the vote of a highly polarising bill increasing the role of the Russian language in linguistically-divided Ukraine in Kiev on June 5, 2012. The Ukrainian parliament backed a controversial bill making Russian the country's de-facto second national language as several thousand protesters rallied in the city centre.

 Kherson City Council has declared Russian a regional language at a special sitting on Tuesday, Aug. 21.

Some 47 deputies supported this decision and six deputies voted against it, according to the Khersonska Pravda local newspaper.

Oppositionists held a picket outside the building of the city council during the special sitting.

The Kyiv Post is hosting comments to foster lively debate. Criticism is fine, but stick to the issues. Comments that include profanity or personal attacks will be removed from the site. If you think that a posted comment violates these standards, please flag it and alert us. We will take steps to block violators.
Bohdan Fedusiw Aug. 22, 2012, 4:20 a.m.    

Too bad for my Mother Country. Have we forgotten Stalin's 6~8 million murders and starvation of Ukrainian men, women and children between '32 & '33?

You want to live and work in Ukraine? Learn Ukrainian. Period.

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Mikey Rondelez Aug. 22, 2012, 2:05 p.m.    

HEY Bogdan

Stalin was a Georgian, were you implying he's Russian? Not only Ukraine suffered starvation, all the republics of the former soviet union did.

So a drought and socialism brought on by Stalin in 32&33 is your justification for repressing a minority? Russian should be an official language, alongside Ukrainian.

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Luda Semeniuk Aug. 24, 2012, 2:13 p.m.    

It wasn't just Stalin. It was russians starving out Ukrainians in Ukraine and surrounding boarders. Then after they depleted Ukrainian population in various regions, they moved in like rats to resettle in those various regions. All in a ploy to take over Ukraine. Today it's no different and there's nothing stopping history to repeat itself.

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Eugene Al Gagins Sept. 5, 2012, 1:58 p.m.    

Luda, I am am a citizen of Ukraine and I am Russian. I am also proud of being both. Ukraine is a great land and Russian ethnicity is my soul. My family lived on the territory of modern Ukraine for generations. My ancestors did not starve anyone. My grandfather (born 1924) is from Odessa from gentry family. His father, a former White Officer, was executed by Soviets when my grandfather was very small. Do you know what it means to be a member of "Enemy of Nation/Vrag Naroda"? it means very hard life. Anyway, since many gentry families had a chance to keep records of their roots I know that my ancestors of that root came to the freed from Ottoman Turks lands and founded Odessa in the end of XVIII century.

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Eugene Al Gagins Sept. 5, 2012, 2:08 p.m.    

My grandmother is from Lwow (born 1922). Lwow was a Polish city for about 600 years. I know that it was founded by people of Rus, but still 600 years is a long journey. Was it easy for my family to see how a ciity populated by Polish majority and large Jewish minority was changed by politicians into purely Ukrainian city? My grandmother passed away in 2007, but I still carry with me a small Russian-Polish vocabulary which she gifted to me when I was 4 or 5. She was not a rat, she was a very kind-hearted person respecting and helping people whenever and wherever she could. During the war she helped a few Jews to survive. What do you know about expulsion of Poles? Her name was Angela, her family lived in Lwow at least since the beginning of XIX century (may be earlier).

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Eugene Al Gagins Sept. 5, 2012, 2:10 p.m.    

Luda, love people, all people, all good people. Do not grow & nurture hatred in your heart. And turn away from those people who want to teach you this hatred.

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Eugene Al Gagins Sept. 5, 2012, 1:46 p.m.    

I speak Russian and my children will speak Russian. I am not trying to impose my native language on other children. Other parents are responsible for other children. I will be responsible for mine. I need good Russian school so that my children properly learn their native language at school, so that my children dive into the masterpieces written by Pushkin, Lermontov, Tolstoy, Chekhov...Bulgakov...Esenin...Visotskiy...Akhmatova...Cvetaeva... A bit later comes the time for the state langauge, Ukrainian, then later on English (lengua franca).

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