Incumbent Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko has said the adoption by the Verkhovna Rada of the draft law on ensuring the functioning of the Ukrainian language as the national language is a historic decision.
"The adoption of the draft law on ensuring the functioning of the Ukrainian language as the national language is a really historic decision, which stands next to the restoration of our army and granting autocephaly to the Orthodox Church of Ukraine," he wrote on Facebook.
According to Poroshenko, the Ukrainian language is a symbol of the Ukrainian people, state and nation.
"And I am grateful to everyone who participated in the development, preparation and implementation of the language law, to the lawmakers for their 'for' votes, and to all Ukrainians for their support. This is another important step toward our independence-oriented mindset," he added.
As UNIAN reported earlier, the Verkhovna Rada, Ukraine's parliament, on April 25 adopted the draft law on ensuring the functioning of the Ukrainian language as the national language.
Some 278 Members of Parliament backed the decision.
The law is not applicable to the sphere of private communication and religious ceremonies.
This law comes into force one month from the date of its publication, except for a number of provisions whose entry is postponed for several years.
The law provides that every citizen of Ukraine is obliged to speak Ukrainian as the language of his or her citizenship. It is noted that the state shall organize Ukrainian language courses for adults and provide an opportunity for citizens of Ukraine to learn the national language free if they had no opportunity.
According to the law, a person seeking Ukrainian citizenship is obliged to pass a Ukrainian language test. However, individuals who perform military service in the Armed Forces of Ukraine and are given a state award and those whose citizenship of Ukraine is of state interest for the country have the right to acquire Ukrainian citizenship without taking the language test, but are obliged master it within one year from the date they are granted Ukraine's citizenship.