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The agreement between Ukraine and the Republic of Belarus on cooperation in providing the rights of persons, belonging to ethnic minorities

of July 23, 1999

Ukraine and the Republic of Belarus that "Parties" hereinafter are referred to as further,

considering that development and consolidation of the relations of friendship, neighborliness and cooperation between them correspond to interests of their people,

in view of interrelation of historical destiny of the people of both states, their spiritual and cultural proximity, and also provision of the Treaty of friendship, neighborliness and cooperation between Ukraine and the Republic of Belarus of July 17, 1995,

confirming the commitment to observance of international standards in the field of the human rights affirmed in the General declaration of human rights, international covenants on human rights and other fundamental documents of the UN

considering obligations which follow from the Gelsinsky Final act of the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe, documents in the field of human measurement of OSCE,

proceeding from the fact that the rights of persons which concern to ethnic minorities are integral part of the conventional human rights

in view of that in the territory of each Party persons who treat the Ukrainian and Belarusian nationalities live,

recognizing that ethnic minorities are integral part of society in which they live, enrich it with the work, originality and culture,

relation system in the field of providing the rights of ethnic minorities based on mutual respect and equal partnership, and also, proceeding from need to provide at the national level of need for culture and education of the Belarusian ethnic minority in Ukraine and the Ukrainian ethnic minority in the Republic of Belarus,

being sure that for consecutive providing the rights of persons which concern to ethnic minorities, preserving and developments of their ethical culture and language originality it is necessary to develop effective cooperation, to expand the contractual legal base in the field of the international relations,

agreed about it:

Article 1

In this Agreement under persons who treat ethnic minorities, are understood respectively:

citizens of Ukraine who carry themselves on ethnic, cultural and language features to the Belarusian ethnic minority;

citizens of the Republic of Belarus who carry themselves on ethnic, cultural and language features to the Ukrainian ethnic minority.

Article 2

The parties confirm that belonging to ethnic minority is question of the individual choice of person, and guarantee that such choice will not have undesirable effects for marked-out person.

Each of the Parties guarantees non-admission in the territory of any discrimination of citizens on the basis of their belonging to ethnic minorities.

Article 3

Each of the Parties guarantees to persons who treat ethnic minorities, the civil, political, social, economic, cultural laws and freedoms according to the conventional international standards in the field of human rights and the national legal system.

Article 4

Each of the Parties recognizes the right to reveal, store and develop ethnic, cultural and language originality for persons who treat ethnic minorities, without violating at the same time the rights and freedoms of other persons.

Each of the Parties will take legislative and administrative measures for non-admission in the territory of any attempts of assimilation of ethnic minorities contrary to their will.

Article 5

Each of the Parties shall provide to persons who treat ethnic minorities, the participation right in public and state life, in particular in permission of questions which concern protection of their legitimate interests.

Each of the Parties recognizes for persons who belong to ethnic minorities, the right to create according to the procedure established by the legislation of the state of accommodation, public organizations, national cultural and educational institutions for preserving and development of ethnic, cultural and language originality.

Activities of noted organizations and institutions can be financed by donations and voluntary contributions, and also by provision of the help by it by the Party according to its national legal system.

Article 6

Each of the Parties recognizes for persons who belong to ethnic minorities, is right to establish and keep in touch freely among themselves in the territory of the state of accommodation, the Parties recognize the right of persons who belong to ethnic minorities, to establish and support bonds with persons of the nationality abroad, and also to participate in activities of the international non-governmental organizations.

Article 7

Each of the Parties recognizes for persons who belong to ethnic minorities, the right to use the native language in private and public life in the limits set by the legislation of the Parties on application of languages.

Each of the Parties recognizes the right of persons who belong to ethnic minorities, on national surname, name and middle name.

Article 8

Each of the Parties recognizes for persons who belong to ethnic minorities, the right to have information access in the native language, to freely distribute such information, including the right to establish mass media in the native language.

Article 9

The parties will take measures for preserving, studying and enhancement of cultural heritage of ethnic minorities, including will provide storage and protection of monuments of their history and culture which are in the territory of each Party.

The parties will encourage activities of the information cultural centers of other Party in the territory and the organizations of their work will help.

Article 10

For the purpose of assistance to maintenance of bonds of persons which belong to ethnic minorities with citizens of other Party with whom they are connected by general ethnic origin and cultural property, and also with the relevant national, cultural and language organizations, the Parties will create necessary conditions for movement of such persons through the borders.

Article 11

Any of obligations of the Parties following from the previous articles of this Agreement cannot be interpreted as the basis for participation in any activities or action, contradicting the purposes and the principles of Articles of organization of the United Nations, the conventional principles and rules of international law, and also the legislation of the Parties.

Article 12

The parties on regular basis will exchange work experience in the field of the international relations, and also up-to-date information that directly or mediately concerns interests of other Party, will hold joint consultations and other joint events.

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