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Hard, soft and BRINO: the Brexit glossary

London - Britain's long goodbye to the European Union often seems to be spoken in unintelligible code.

Icelandic language fighting tsunami of English

Reykjav - Two centuries ago experts predicted that Icelandic would be a dead language by now. But the doomsayers can eat their words: Icelandic is alive and kicking despite an onslaught of English brought on by modern technology.

Metoo, Brexit, environment inspire new dictionary entries

London - "Single-use" was named the Collins Dictionary word of the year on Wednesday, following a four-fold increase in usage since 2013 in a reflection of increased concerns about sustainability.

French MP proposes 'glottophobia' law after southern accent mocked

Paris - A French MP on Thursday announced the tabling of a bill to outlaw regional linguistic discrimination, "glottophobia", after a prominent politician mocked a journalist's southern accent."Do we speak French any the less with an accent.

South Tyrol debates dual Italian-Austrian citizenship

Bolzano - The Austrian government has angered Italy with plans to offer dual citizenship to the majority German-speaking population of South Tyrol province.

Italy, Austria at odds over South Tyrol dual-citizenship

Bolzano - A diplomatic row threatens to disrupt Italy's Alpine province of South Tyrol: over the question of national identity and whether some of its inhabitants should have the right to Austrian citizenship.

Rwandan foreign minister elected Francophonie head

Yerevan - The world organisation of French-speaking nations on Friday elected Rwandan Foreign Minister Louise Mushikiwabo as its new head despite her country's shift to English a decade ago and controversy over its rights record.

Can Saudi Arabia be considered 'francophone'?

Paris - It might seem absurd to question whether Saudi Arabia can be considered francophone, but the world's club of French-speaking countries will take up the matter at a meeting that opened Thursday in Armenia.

Choice of francophone chief makes waves in Africa

Dakar - In normal times, African countries would have loudly saluted the choice of Rwanda's Louise Mushikiwabo as head of the world community of French-speaking countries.

French linguists want to bid adieu to 'fake news'

Paris - Defenders of the French language on Thursday pleaded with people to stop using the English term "fake news", recommending they refer to "information fallacieuse" instead.

Ukraine region ban on Russian culture sparks controversy

Lviv - The decision by a fiercely pro-Western region of Ukraine to ban Russian-language arts, from songs to books and films, prompted widespread condemnation on Thursday even as it remained unclear how it would be implemented.

Row over Ukraine region's ban on Russian-language culture

Lviv - A Ukrainian region's decision to ban Russian-language arts, from songs to books and films, prompted growing controversy Thursday even as it remained unclear how it would be implemented.

Dutch MPs moot plan to counter 'baffling' court speak

Den Haag - Progressive Dutch lawmakers Tuesday presented an action plan aimed at untangling notoriously complicated legal jargon and court language used by local judges, said to be "incomprehensible" to parts of the population.

Rwanda reconsiders role of snubbed French language

Kigali - Rwanda turned its back on the French-speaking world when it chose English as the language of education a decade ago, but with bilingualism seen as an asset French is reviving.

Macron unveils plan to boost French, 'language of liberty'

Paris - President Emmanuel Macron on Tuesday unveiled plans to get more people speaking French, saying the "treasure shared by 700 million people" belonged to all and should be given more prominence in the EU ahead of Brexit.

France's most anglophone president on a mission to push French

Paris - President Emmanuel Macron, whose mastery of English is unprecedented among French leaders, will on Tuesday unveil his strategy to promote his native language, aiming to make it the first language in Africa, "maybe even the world".

Making French great again: Macron looks to Africa

Paris - He's France's most anglophone president ever, who reaches for the language of the old foe when telling global audiences that "France is back", or that he wants ecologically to "make our planet great again.

French language eyes 'le comeback' as Britain leaves Europe

Apo - Once upon a time speaking French was easy in Brussels, but things have changed.

Macedonia adopts law to boost Albanian language status

Skopje - Macedonian parliament on Wednesday passed a law bolstering official use of the Albanian language in the Balkan country, despite protests from the rightwing opposition who argue the move will endanger national unity.

Luxembourgish makes a comeback, bids for EU approval

Luxembourg - You may not be able to pronounce it or even have heard of it, but Luxembourg's national language Letzebuergesch is making a comeback and fighting for official European Union recognition.

Macedonian President vetoes law boosting Albanian language

Skopje - Macedonian President Gjorge Ivanov vetoed Wednesday a law giving greater status to the Albanian language in the Balkan country, saying it could endanger its "unity and sovereignty".

Macedonia boosts Albanian language status

Skopje - Macedonia's parliament on Thursday adopted a law giving greater status to the Albanian language in the Balkan country, a move that the rightwing opposition claims will endanger national unity.

Ukraine language reform fuels identity fears among ethnic Hungarians

Uzhgorod - The central street in a small town in the foothills of the Carpathian Mountains in western Ukraine is buzzing with life.

Allowing AI to learn words in the flow of dialogue

A new technique has been developed that enables artificial intelligence systems to learn words in the flow of dialogue. Improving linguistic reasoning is a step towards more effective artificial intelligence.

Teng bong! Minority languages on the rise in Singapore

Singapore - Kevin Martens Wong reels off sentences in Kristang, which is among several minority languages in Singapore enjoying a new lease of life after a decades-long drive to encourage the use of English and Mandarin.

PM quashes bid to make French less macho

Paris - French Prime Minister Edouard Philippe has clamped down on attempts to make French more female-friendly, issuing a ban on so-called "inclusive writing" in official texts, according to a memo seen by AFP on Tuesday.

Purists alarmed over moves to make French less macho

Paris - Moves to make French more female-friendly have sparked impassioned debate in France, with an appalled Academie Francaise warning of a "mortal danger" to the language of Moliere.

Armenia's plans on teaching Russian raise fears of Moscow influence

Yerevan - Armenia plans to increase teaching Russian in schools in a move that has sparked widespread concerns that Moscow's influence is growing in the ex-Soviet state.

Croatia school removes Melania Trump English ads

Zagreb - Billboards featuring a glamourous image of US First Lady Melania Trump and the caption: "Just imagine how far you can go with a little bit of English" were supposed to attract students to a language school in Croatia.

Epic quest to document 'miracle' of Hebrew language

Jerusalem - The bespectacled man with two pens in his shirt pocket and a black skullcap atop grey hair points to his computer screen and explains an epic project spanning generations.
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An example of  Franglais  - the use of English words and phrases in French - in a Parisian restauran...
An example of 'Franglais' - the use of English words and phrases in French - in a Parisian restaurant
Jonanamary on Flick'r
Etruscan alphabet has very similar-looking letters to our alphabet.
Etruscan alphabet has very similar-looking letters to our alphabet.
Prof. Valery Chudinov
An image of a National Geographical researcher conversing with a member of the Koro language
An image of a National Geographical researcher conversing with a member of the Koro language
Houston  TX  October 14  2005 -- Charley Henderson  lead PIO in Houston and a Vietnamese language li...
Houston, TX, October 14, 2005 -- Charley Henderson, lead PIO in Houston and a Vietnamese language linguist, appears with Kiem Vu, on Little Saigon, a Houston radio station targeted at the local and evacuated Vietnamese population. FEMA provides language services for most languages in the super DRC. Photo by Ed Edahl/FEMA

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