Program on state language approved in Azerbaijan
By Nigar Orujova
A single information database of Azerbaijani as the state language will be created in Azerbaijan by 2015.
The database creation is envisioned by the state program on the use of Azerbaijani language in the context of globalization, in accordance with the requirements of the times and the development of linguistics in the country, which was approved by President Ilham Aliyev on Tuesday.
The Cabinet of Ministers is to coordinate pertinent work with relevant organizations while exercising control over the implementation of the state program. The cabinet was also assigned to report to the President once a year on progress in the implementation of the program and solve related issues.
According to the program, in 2013-2015 the Azerbaijan National Academy of Sciences (ANAS) and the Education Ministry will prepare new standards of Azerbaijani language teaching methods, improving the structure of the ANAS Institute of Linguistics. Speech culture will be taught at local universities. Also, enlightenment measures will be taken in state-run organizations and the media to enforce proper use of the national language.
By 2016, ANAS, the Communications and Information Technologies Ministry and the Copyright Agency will create a system of anti-plagiarism on Azerbaijani language.
Improved electronic orthographic, explanatory, phrasal, terminology, and encyclopedic dictionaries of Azerbaijani language will be compiled by 2020.
Moreover, projects will be prepared on stepping up work in comparative phonetics, lexis and grammar of Turkic languages.
An e-library of manuscripts as well as a relevant Web portal will also be created to simplify access to manuscripts of the ANAS Institute of Manuscripts.
Under the state program, within a year, Azerbaijan's National Television and Radio Broadcasting Council will create an art council on protecting the Azerbaijani language and culture of speech at the TV and radio broadcasters of the country.
To enforce literary norms of the Azerbaijani language, TV and radio programs, print and electronic media will be trained on linguistic skills.
The work will be carried out by ANAS, the TV and radio broadcasting council, the Press Council and the Education Ministry.
To protect the language, a hotline will also be opened in Azerbaijan in 2013-2014. The hotline will ensure civil participation in the development of the state language, to save purity of the language and to prevent violations of the literary norms of Azerbaijani language in advertising.
In March, the Institute of Linguistics announced preparation of an orthophonic dictionary, which will help to regulate the spoken language and may also be used by TV and radio broadcasters' employees.
According to the Institute head Fekhreddin Veyselli, many mass media outlets significantly violate the norms of Azerbaijani language.
Irregularities in intonation, the accent on words and articulation of sounds is observed in the spoken language. The mentioned dictionary will help to use the single pure Azerbaijani language, Veyselli believes.
Moreover, a vocabulary of terms related to journalism in the English, Russian and Turkish languages was published in Azerbaijan in late March, as part of the effort to protect the Azerbaijani language.
The Azerbaijani President signed a decree on the preparation of the state program on the Azerbaijani language last May.
Azerbaijani was declared the official language of the Azerbaijan Republic, which currently has a population of over 9 million people, by holding a nationwide referendum in 1995.
The Azerbaijani language belongs to the ancient Turkic group of languages and, together with the closely associated Turkish, Turkmen and Gagauz languages, forms the southwestern group of Turkic languages.
The Turkic languages constitute a family of at least thirty-five languages, spoken by Turkic peoples across a vast area from southeastern Europe and the Mediterranean to Siberia and western China.
The Turkic languages are spoken by some 170 million people, including speakers of a second language. There is also a high degree of mutual intelligibility between the various Oghuz languages, which include Turkish, Azerbaijani, Turkmen, Qashqai, Gagauz, Balkan Gagauz Turkish and Oghuz-influenced Crimean Tatar.