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From Lund to Ljubljana: Promoting the participation of national minorities as a pathway to the integration of diverse societies

14 Nov 2019

Today Sweden had the honor to host the celebration of the 20th anniversary of the Lund Recommendations on the Effective Participation of National Minorities in Public Life. The Conference was arranged by the OSCE High Commissioner on National Minorities (HCNM) in Lund, Sweden, supported by the Government of Sweden and co-hosted by the Raoul Wallenberg Institute of Human Rights and Humanitarian Law, which played an instrumental role in drafting the Lund Recommendations in 1999.

"It was here, in Lund in 1999, that Sweden had the honor of hosting the meeting where the Lund recommendations were first presented, and I am pleased to say that the commitment of the Swedish government remains strong which is seen not least in legislation and policies which continue to be developed to ensure Minorities’ participation in decision making”, said Annika Ben David, Sweden’s Ambassador-at-large for Human Rights, Democracy and the Rule of Law in her opening speech. Read the full speech here.

OSCE HCNM Lamberto Zannier stressed: “The premise of the Lund Recommendations is that when people have a real opportunity to participate effectively in the society in which they live, including through benefitting from protections for their identity, society is less likely to be marred by conflict. It is less likely to fail.”

Tarja Halonen, Former President of Finland, continued: “An issue that is sometimes difficult to tackle is structural discrimination. For better access to justice and rights, stronger co-operation – among countries, within regions, and between minority representatives and governments – is needed”.

Experts explored these themes in four separate panels on political participation; cross-border and economic participation; the participation of minority women in public life, and the specific experience of Sweden.

For PDF attachments or links to sources of further information, please visit the OSCE web site

 

Last updated 14 Nov 2019, 4.15 PM