Bulgaria has an obligation to respect the rights of minorities and to ensure that no one is discriminated against on the basis of their freely chosen identity, the UN Human Rights Office told Voice of America when asked to comment on Bulgaria’s requirement to wrote the Bulgarians in the Macedonian Constitution, while there are 14 judgments against it by the Court in Strasbourg for violating the rights of the Macedonian minority on its territory.
The UN Human Rights Office pointed to the report that an independent UN expert on minority issues presented to the Human Rights Council in July 2011, according to which the Government of Bulgaria is called upon to protect the freedom of expression and association of members of the Macedonian minority.
“The report calls on the Bulgarian Government to ensure and protect the rights guaranteed in the country’s constitutional provisions to respect the right to ethnic self-determination, including the rights to freedom of expression and freedom of association of members of the Macedonian minority. It emphasizes that policies relating to the recognition and rights of minority groups must be assessed against the state’s obligations under international human rights law,” says the UN Human Rights Office.
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