Taiwan has responsibility to protect local languages: Culture minister

Radio Taiwan International
Date: 2017-04-08

Culture Minister Cheng Li-chiun says that Taiwan has a responsibility to protect local


languages and linguistic diversity.

Cheng was speaking Saturday during a public hearing about a proposed national language development act hosted by the culture ministry. She said that a long period of promoting Mandarin Chinese has limited the natural development of many Taiwanese groups’ native languages. She said that this has created a crisis where these languages are no longer passed on.

Cheng said the loss of local languages is still ongoing, and that UNESCO has included indigenous Taiwanese languages on its list of languages facing extinction. She said that UNESCO’s concern for Taiwan’s indigenous languages shows that Taiwan has a responsibility to revitalize these languages, both to itself and to the world.

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