Author`s name Pravda.Ru

Latvian schoolchildren picket European Parliament

Russian-speaking schoolchildren from Latvia will picket the European Parliament in Strasbourg on Wednesday in protest of Latvia's school reforms which limit teaching in the Russian language in Russian schools.

According to the Latvian government's decision, beginning on September 1, 2004, at least 60% of teaching in the senior classes of the Russian schools must be in Latvian.

The headquarters, which was set up to defend Russian schools in Latvia and oppose the reform, organized the action.

According to the organizers, more than 30 schoolchildren, who were invited to Strasbourg by Latvian European Parliament member Tatyana Zhdanok, will picket. The European Parliament sanctioned the picket.

Apart from the schoolchildren, more than a dozen members of the Latvian Young Workers Organization will also picket.

According to the organizers, the goal of the picket is to inform European parliamentarians about the situation in the Russian schools in Latvia. The participants in the action will spread leaflets that call on the members of the European Parliament to support the movement of the Latvian activists who support Russian schools.

After the picket, the participants will visit the European Parliament and meet with a number of parliamentarians.

Yesterday, a plenary meeting of the European Parliament was held in Strasbourg. For the first time, deputies from ten new members of the European Union, including nine deputies from Latvia, took part in the meeting.