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Irish language film fund must signal further moves

19 April, 2004

Sinn Féin Culture Spokesperson, East Derry MLA Francie Brolly has welcomed the announcement that the British government has made £12 million available to support Irish language film and television production over the next three years but added that this must signal greater progress in a number of key areas including the availability of TG4 throughout the Six Counties.

Mr Brolly said:

"This £12 million should help us to meet the targets of delivering 90 hours of Irish language broadcasting a year to an audience of 25,000 people by 2007/08 and to enable at least 15 people to be trained each year in production and broadcasting skills.

"This is good news for the Irish language community but it must now signal the start of the British government stepping up their commitments. They still have a long way to go to implement commitments made in the Good Friday Agreement, particularly on access to TG4.

"To date the British government has adopted a minimalist approach to its commitments to the Irish language community. The response to the signing of the EU Charter on minority languages was particularly disappointing. The Irish language should not be used as a political football this is an ever growing community that has a great deal to offer." ENDS

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