'CONCEPT OF NATIONS' RECOGNITION CALL A recommendation by the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe (PACE) on the ‘concept of nation’ has been backed by the European Parliament regional and minority language Intergroup. The PACE recommendation stated that, “Everyone should be free to define themselves as a member of a cultural “nation”, irrespective of their citizenship”. In response, the Intergroup commented that ‘Council of Europe member states should avoid defining themselves in exclusively ethnic terms, and should do their utmost to help their minorities, a source of enrichment, to flourish’. Today, both the French and the British Governments still deny people from some of the Celtic countries to legally describe themselves in terms of their Celtic national identities in all areas of life. This is particularly the case where Brittany is concerned, where the French Government have been repeatedly condemned by international organisations and other bodies, for their denial of these basic human rights to the Breton people.
Intergroup leader Mr Csaba Tabajdi, Member of the European Parliament, said that, "This recommendation is of utter importance, representing a paradigm change in the protection of minorities in Europe. It contains a new, elaborate concept of nation."
The recommendation states that: "The term “nation” is deeply rooted in peoples, culture and history and incorporates fundamental elements of their identity. “It is also closely linked to political ideologies, which have exploited it and adulterated its original meaning. Furthermore, in view of the diversity of languages spoken in European countries, a concept such as nation is quite simply not translatable in many countries where, at best, only rough translations are to be found in certain national languages"
Full text of the recommendation:
(voir le site) (Report collated for Celtic News by Rhisiart Talebot - Kernow Branch - with acknowledgement to Davyth Hicks of Eurolang for research material)
J B Moffatt Secretary General Celtic League