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Bairbre de Brún becomes first MEP to address EU Parliament in Irish since official recognition of language

23 June, 2005


Sinn Féin MEP Bairbre de Brún became the first person to address the European Parliament in Irish since the European Council agreed to give it the status of official working language of the EU. Ms de Brún spoke in Brussels yesterday evening.

Commenting today Ms de Brún said:

"I am very proud to be the first MEP to address the European Parliament in Irish since agreement on official working language status for the language. All of this has been made possible through the hard work of those who lobbied hard for this.

"I extend congratulations and heartfelt thanks to all involved in the STÁDAS campaign for achieving the status of official working language of the European Union for the Irish language.

"This international recognition will have a very great influence not only on the language but on those of us who speak the language and who wish to be on an equal footing with our fellow Europeans. I ask the President of the Parliament to convey to the Council our satisfaction in this matter and would ask also that everything possible be done to meet the needs that arise from this new status between now and 1 January 2007 to ensure that the appropriate services can be provided in Irish." ENDS

Full text of Speech:

Mar Gael agus mar gaeilgeoir failtím roimh chinneadh an Aontais Eorpaigh go dtabharfaí stádas oifigiúil agus oibre don Ghaeilge san Aontas Eorpach. Cuirfidh an t-aitheantas sin chan amháin le stádas na teanga ach beidh tionchar an-mhór ag aitheantas idirnáisiúnta ar stádas lucht labhartha na Gaeilge chomh maith.

Molaim go hard gach éinne atá bainte leis an fheachtas STÁDAS agus na heagraíochta ar fad atá ag obair ar son cothromaíochta do phobal na Gaeilge i gcomhar lenár gcomh Eorpaigh.

Iarraim ar Uachtarán na Pairliminte ár sásamh a chur in iúil don Chomhairle. Iarraim air chomh maith cinntiú go ndéanfaí gach ní is féidir le go mbeidh Pairlimint na hEorpa agus na hinistiúidí eorpacha eile in ann freastal ar na riachtanais a bhaineann leis an stádas nua idir seo agus Mí Eanáir 2007 agus go mbeifear in ann na seirbhísí cuí a sholáthar i nGaeilge.

As an Irish speaker I welcome the decision to accord the status of official working language of the European Union to the Irish language. This international recognition will have a very great influence not only on the language but on those of us who speak the language and who wish to be on an equal footing with our fellow Europeans.

I extend congratulations and heartfelt thanks to all involved in the STÁDAS campaign to achieve this status of official working language of the European Union for the Irish language.

I ask the President of the Parliament to convey to the Council our satisfaction in this matter and would ask also that everything possible be done to meet the needs that arise from this new status between now and 1 January 2007 to ensure that the appropriate services can be provided in Irish.

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