On February 21, 2019 the National Library of the Republic of Belarus hosted a solemn event dedicated to the 20th Anniversary of the UNESCO proclamation of the International Mother Language Day and the 25th Anniversary of the adoption of the Constitution of the Republic of Belarus.
The Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Belarus, Chair of the National Commission for UNESCO, Vladimir Makei, in his welcoming speech stressed that all steps to spread the native languages contribute to linguistic diversity and multilingual education, strengthen solidarity based on mutual understanding, tolerance and dialogue. As the national poet of Belarus Yakub Kolas noted: “The native word is our first source of knowledge about life and the world around us.”
“With understanding of value of the Belarusian language today we are working to ensure its continuity and constant transmission from generation to generation with the preservation of respect to all other languages,” said V.Makei. The Head of the Foreign Ministry noted that the Belarusian language is not only an important element of our statehood, it is also a distinctive component of the ethnic identity of Belarusians, values and traditions of our people.
The Foreign Minister drew attention to the fact that 2019 marks the 25th Anniversary of the country's fundamental law, the Constitution of the Republic of Belarus that was adopted on March 15, 1994 and defined the foundations of the state structure of young independent Belarus.
V.Makei cited a number of provisions of the Fundamental Law, which attaches the sovereign right of Belarus to carry out domestic and foreign policy independently, defend its independence, territorial integrity and constitutional order.
The event was attended by the representatives of the diplomatic corps, members of the National Commission for UNESCO.
More than 20 foreign diplomats have read extracts from national Constitutions in their native languages, which most clearly embody the norms and principles on which the state system and policies of their countries are based.
During the event, the guests got acquainted with the exhibitions “Constitutions of Different Countries” and “Manifesto” of the Republic”. The vocalists of the Belarusian State Academy of Music performed a number of musical compositions.