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Ministry of Justice: non-Lithuanian name spelling issue is legally difficult

Pasas
Juliaus Kalinsko / 15min nuotr. / Pasas
Šaltinis: BNS
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Lithuanian Minister of Justice Juozas Bernatonis says his ministry will soon start to draft a bill on the spelling of non-Lithuanian names. But, he warned, it would be difficult to find a legal solution taking into account constitutional provisions on the status of the Lithuanian language as the state language.

The Cabinet had ordered the Ministry of Justice to draft a bill to allow the spelling of names in documents using not only Lithuanian characters. The move is linked to requests by Polish Lithuanians and Lithuanians married to foreigners.

„It's a complicated issue in the legal sense,“ Bernatonis told journalists on Wednesday.

The minister believes that bills by the previous government were unconstitutional.

The Constitutional Court ruled in 1999 that „Lithuanian shall be the State language, therefore in the

passport of the citizen of the Republic of Lithuania the names and family names of individuals, as well as other entries, are written in the state language of the Republic of Lithuania, i.e. in Lithuanian letters.“

The Court also reiterated that in 2009 when ruled that „after the name and family name of an individual have been entered in the state language in the passport of the Republic of Lithuania, it is allowed to specify the name and family name of the individual in other, non-Lithuanian graphic signs of writing and in non-grammaticised form in other sections for entries of the passport, when the individual requests so; such entry of the name and family name of the individual in non-Lithuanian graphic signs of writing in other sections for entries of the passport should not be made equal to the entry regarding the identity of the individual made in the state language.“

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