Belfast Telegraph

Lack of Northern Ireland government blamed for Irish and Ulster-Scots report omission

The UK Government has not provided any information on how Irish and Ulster-Scots will be protected to the Council of Europe because of the absence of a functioning Northern Ireland Executive, a Stormont department has said.

The UK’s submission to the Council of Europe- a human rights organisation with 47 member states- only included details on Scots, Scottish Gaelic, Welsh, Manx and Cornish, the BBC reports.

The UK government is meant to provide information every four years on how it plans to promote and protect minority languages.

The details include how minority languages are taught in schools, how widely they are spoken, how they are reflected in the media and how governments are promoting their use in public services.

The Council of Europe said the UK authorities had told the council that due to the current absence of the devolved government in Northern Ireland they we unable to provide details regarding Irish and Ulster-Scots for the report.

The devolved governments in Scotland, Wales and the Isle of Man have provided detailed information.

The Council of Europe previously criticised the Northern Ireland Executive for not providing information in 2014. At the time the Executive put this down to a lack of “political consensus” on Irish and Ulster-Scots.

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