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International Mother Language Day 21 February 2018

21 February, International Mother Language Day has been observed every year since February 2000 to promote linguistic and cultural diversity and multilingualism.

2018 Theme: Linguistic diversity and multilingualism count for sustainable development

International Mother Language Day 21 February 2018
International Mother Language Day 21 February 2018
  • At least 43% of the estimated 6000 languages spoken in the world are endangered. Only a few hundred languages have genuinely been given a place in education systems and the public domain, and less than a hundred are used in the digital world.
  • Languages are the most powerful instruments of preserving and developing our tangible and intangible heritage. All moves to promote the dissemination of mother tongues will serve not only to encourage linguistic diversity and multilingual education but also to develop fuller awareness of linguistic and cultural traditions throughout the world and to inspire solidarity based on understanding, tolerance and dialogue.
70th anniversary of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights

This year (2018), UNESCO commemorates the 70th anniversary of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and its bold statement that ‘no discrimination can be made on the basis of language’, and celebrates its translation into more than 500 languages.

“Everyone is entitled to all the rights and freedoms set forth in this Declaration, without distinction of any kind, such as race, colour, sex, language, religion, political or other opinion, national or social origin, property, birth or other status..”

- Article 2, Universal Declaration of Human Rights(link is external), 1948

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