The Ukrainian Parliament has approved a language law that seeks to increase the use of Ukrainian in a country where Russian is also widely used.

The Supreme Rada on Thursday, April 25, voted overwhelmingly to support the bill, which will force increased use of Ukrainian in the media and in public administration.

The issue of the Russian language became a major point of discontent in 2014 when separatists took control of parts of eastern Ukraine.

Ukraine’s president-elect Volodymyr Zelenskiy, a Russian speaker, said he favors Ukrainian as the official language but has spoken in favor of encouraging the use of Ukrainian rather than forcing it on people. Outgoing President Petro Poroshenko who stays in office until next month has said he will sign the bill into law.

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