In 2018, for the first time, the international community will be celebrating the International Day of Parliamentarism on 30 June. The International Day of Parliamentarism will be an opportunity to recognise the important role played by parliaments as the core institution of democracy and the responsibilities of parliamentarians in representing people to ensure they have a say in how they are governed. It will also be an key opportunity to celebrate our global parliamentary community and to promote the values that we hold dear, namely: strong parliaments, gender equality, human rights, sustainable development, peace and security, global governance and youth.
At an event arranged by the Chair of the APPG for Human Rights, Rt Hon Ann Clwyd MP, and attended by members of the APPG for Malaysia led by its Chair, Sir William Cash MP, the UK Parliament warmly welcomed the recent full pardon of Anwar Ibrahim, the former Deputy Prime Minister of Malaysia. In his comments to MPs and Peers, Mr Anwar recognised the important role parliamentarians had played in supporting his struggle for justice, particularly through the work of the IPU Committee on the Human Rights of Parliamentarians. Mr Anwar took the opportunity to call for UK support for addressing investigations underway into corruption in Malaysia including repatriation of assets seized in the UK and UK parliamentarians pledged to provide parliamentary support for any UK efforts to do so.
The United Nations General Assembly has adopted its latest resolution on the interaction between the United Nations, parliaments and the IPU. The resolution, co-sponsored by over 90 UN Member States, reaffirms the commitment of all parties to continue efforts to bridge the democracy gap between the international agenda and its implementation at the national level. The resolution recognizes particularly the work of the IPU in mobilizing parliamentary action to implement the 2030 Sustainable Development Goals. This is the 14th resolution in a series that started 20 years ago. The resolutions give the UN system and the IPU, the global organization of parliaments, a framework to facilitate a parliamentary component to major UN processes.