Indonesian is the 10th language recognized as the official language of the UNESCO General Conference, in addition to English, Arabic, Mandarin Chinese, French, Spanish, Russian, Hindi, Italian, and Portuguese.
"The Indonesian language has been the nation's uniting force since pre-independence times, especially through the Youth Pledge in 1928, so it is able to connect various ethnicities in Indonesia," Indonesian Ambassador to France, Andorra, and Monaco Mohamad Oemar noted in a statement on Monday.
The recognition was marked by the adoption of Resolution 42 C/28 by consensus during the plenary session.
Oemar noted that more than 275 million people speak the Indonesian language. The curriculum of the language has entered 52 countries, and currently, at least 150 thousand foreign speakers actively use it.
"Indonesia's active leadership at the global level began at the Asia-Africa Conference in Bandung in 1955, which became the seed for the formation of the non-aligned countries' group. Indonesia has a strong commitment to continue its leadership and positive contribution to the world," he remarked.
Oemar noted that the contribution was marked by the collaboration with other countries in addressing global challenges through Indonesia's G20 presidency in 2022 and ASEAN chairmanship in 2023.
He emphasized that the recognition would increase awareness of the Indonesian language and contribute to develop connectivity between nations, strengthen cooperation with UNESCO, and is part of Indonesia's commitment to cultural development at the global level.
"The recognition of Indonesian as the official language of the UNESCO General Conference will have a positive impact on peace, harmony, and the achievement of sustainable development goals not only at the national level but also throughout the world," he affirmed.
The Indonesian government's effort to propose Indonesian as the conference's official language fulfills the mandate of Article 44, Paragraph 1 of Law Number 24 of 2009, namely, "the government increases the Indonesian language's function as an international language gradually, systematically, and sustainably."
This proposal is also a de jure effort to make Indonesian the official language of an international institution. As for the de facto effort, the Indonesian government has developed communities of foreign speakers of Indonesian in 52 countries.
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