World Library  
Flag as Inappropriate
Email this Article

Framework Convention for the Protection of National Minorities

Article Id: WHEBN0001849183
Reproduction Date:

Title: Framework Convention for the Protection of National Minorities  
Author: World Heritage Encyclopedia
Language: English
Subject: Racism in Latvia, International human rights instruments, Municipalities with language facilities, Minority languages of Croatia, Cornwall
Collection: 1995 in France, Council of Europe Treaties, Ethnic Minorities, Minority Rights, Politics of Europe, Treaties Concluded in 1995, Treaties Entered Into Force in 1998, Treaties Extended to Greenland, Treaties Extended to the Faroe Islands, Treaties of Albania, Treaties of Armenia, Treaties of Austria, Treaties of Azerbaijan, Treaties of Bosnia and Herzegovina, Treaties of Bulgaria, Treaties of Croatia, Treaties of Cyprus, Treaties of Denmark, Treaties of Estonia, Treaties of Finland, Treaties of Georgia (Country), Treaties of Germany, Treaties of Hungary, Treaties of Ireland, Treaties of Italy, Treaties of Latvia, Treaties of Liechtenstein, Treaties of Lithuania, Treaties of Malta, Treaties of Moldova, Treaties of Montenegro, Treaties of Norway, Treaties of Poland, Treaties of Portugal, Treaties of Romania, Treaties of Russia, Treaties of San Marino, Treaties of Serbia and Montenegro, Treaties of Slovakia, Treaties of Slovenia, Treaties of Spain, Treaties of Sweden, Treaties of Switzerland, Treaties of the Czech Republic, Treaties of the Netherlands, Treaties of the Republic of MacEdonia, Treaties of the United Kingdom, Treaties of Ukraine
Publisher: World Heritage Encyclopedia

Framework Convention for the Protection of National Minorities

Signatories in light green, member states in dark green, non-members of the Council of Europe in grey

The Framework Convention for the Protection of National Minorities (FCNM) is a multilateral treaty of the Council of Europe aimed at protecting the rights of minorities.[1] It came into effect in 1998 and by 2009 it had been ratified by 39 member states.


  • History 1
  • Aims and criticism 2
  • See also 3
  • References 4
  • External links 5


The Council of Europe first discussed according specific protection for national minorities in 1949, but it was not until 1990 that the Council of Europe made a firm commitment to protect these minority groups. Recommendation 1134 (1990) contained a list of principles which the Assembly considered necessary for this purpose. The Parliamentary Assembly did in the beginning call for adoption of a protocol to the ECHR.[2] The Framework was signed on February 1995 by 22 member States of the Council of Europe and became active in 1998.[1] By 2009, 43 member states had signed and 39 ratified it.

Aims and criticism

The broad aims of the convention are to ensure that the signatory states respect the rights of national minorities, undertaking to combat discrimination, promote equality, preserve and develop the culture and identity of national minorities, guarantee certain freedoms in relation to access to the media, minority languages and education and encourage the participation of national minorities in public life. Article 25 of the Framework Convention binds the member states to submit a report to the Council of Europe containing "full information on the legislative and other measures taken to give effect to the principles set out in this framework Convention" (Council of Europe, 1994, 7).

The convention has come under some criticism. First of all, not all member states of the Council of Europe have signed and ratified it. France and Turkey have done neither. Iceland, Belgium, Luxembourg and Greece have signed and have yet to ratify. Also, the provisions offer little new on already existing international treaties. Furthermore, they are hedged around with many phrases including 'as far as possible'. The convention does not define "national minority" and several countries set their own definition of the term when they ratified the treaty.[1] For example, the United Kingdom ratified the convention on the understanding that it would be applied with reference to "racial groups" within the meaning of Section 3(1) of the Race Relations Act 1976.[3] Since this excluded the Cornish people, there has been pressure, including from Cornwall Council, for the UK Government to recognise the Cornish as a national minority.[4] However, in April 2014, it was announced by the Chief Secretary to the Treasury, Danny Alexander, that the UK Government would recognise the Cornish as a national minority under the FCNM.[5]

Overall however, Phillips (2002) has argued that because the FCNM is flexible it has allowed such a great number of states to ratify it so quickly. Therefore it should not be considered a failure, but a start. Many authors agree with this arguing that it needs to be implemented in 'good faith' with the political will to support commitment to minority rights.

See also


  1. ^ a b c "The Council of Europe's Framework Convention for the Protection of National Minorities" (PDF). United Nations Guide for Minorities – Pamphlet No. 8. Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights. Retrieved 8 February 2013. 
  2. ^ RECOMMENDATION 1201 (1993)
  3. ^ Hansard – Andrew George – March 2007
  4. ^ "Cornish minority bid gets a big boost". This is Cornwall. 22 April 2010. Retrieved 8 February 2013. 
  5. ^ "Cornish people formally declared a national minority along with Scots, Welsh and Irish". The Independent. 23 April 2014. 

External links

  • Data on Conventions on Council of Europe portal
  • Secretariat of the Framework Convention
  • State and NGO reports under FCNM
  • Implementing the Framework Convention for the Protection of National Minorities, by María Amor Martín Estébanez and Kinga Gál, ECMI Report #3 (1999)
  • Eurominority map of minorities, native peoples and ethnic groups
  • European languages
  • European Centre for Minority Issues
  • The Rights of Minorities in Europe 2008 – A Commentary on the European Framework Convention for the Protection of National Minorities by Marc Weller
  • Recommendations from NGOs for increasing the effectiveness and expanding the ratification of the FCNM 2008
  • The re-politicization of minority protection: six cases from the FCNM monitoring process, ECMI Study #7 (2012) by Tove H. Malloy
This article was sourced from Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License; additional terms may apply. World Heritage Encyclopedia content is assembled from numerous content providers, Open Access Publishing, and in compliance with The Fair Access to Science and Technology Research Act (FASTR), Wikimedia Foundation, Inc., Public Library of Science, The Encyclopedia of Life, Open Book Publishers (OBP), PubMed, U.S. National Library of Medicine, National Center for Biotechnology Information, U.S. National Library of Medicine, National Institutes of Health (NIH), U.S. Department of Health & Human Services, and, which sources content from all federal, state, local, tribal, and territorial government publication portals (.gov, .mil, .edu). Funding for and content contributors is made possible from the U.S. Congress, E-Government Act of 2002.
Crowd sourced content that is contributed to World Heritage Encyclopedia is peer reviewed and edited by our editorial staff to ensure quality scholarly research articles.
By using this site, you agree to the Terms of Use and Privacy Policy. World Heritage Encyclopedia™ is a registered trademark of the World Public Library Association, a non-profit organization.

Copyright © World Library Foundation. All rights reserved. eBooks from World Library are sponsored by the World Library Foundation,
a 501c(4) Member's Support Non-Profit Organization, and is NOT affiliated with any governmental agency or department.