Nearly 750 MPs worldwide condemned the discrimination and abuse of refugees and migrants at the conclusion of the 138th Inter-Parliamentary Union (IPU) Assembly in Geneva. The Assembly Declaration emphasized the critical role of parliaments in transforming the aspirations of the two Global Compacts – one on migrants and the other on refugees - into national laws. The Declaration asserted that migration when properly managed contributes to greater well-being and prosperity. Likewise, the Declaration said that the flight of refugees from persecution and conflict is not new. When refugees flee, those who provide them with the protection and assistance they need represent the power of humanity and must be supported in their efforts by the international community.
The Inter-Parliamentary Union (IPU) expressed serious concerns about the scale and type of alleged human rights violations of parliamentarians in Cambodia, the Maldives, Turkey and Venezuela with the effect of jeopardizing parliamentary democracy in these countries. Meeting at the IPU 138th Assembly, the Committee on the Human Rights of Parliamentarians examined the cases of over 221 MPs from these four countries. In addition, they reviewed the cases of 11 MPs from Zambia, two from Niger and one each from Mongolia and the Philippines. Overall, the IPU took positions on cases of violations against 237 MPs in 8 countries.
Parliamentarians from over 137 countries will seek to identify and agree upon parliamentary inputs to the UN-led reforms on the rights and protection of migrants and refugees. Meeting at the 138th IPU Assembly in Geneva more than 740 MPs, including 65 Speakers of Parliament and 216 women parliamentarians, will look in detail at their contribution to ensuring domestic enforcement of the two related Global Compacts expected to be adopted by the UN community later this year. During a busy five-day IPU Assembly agenda, member parliaments will also adopt resolutions on sustaining peace as a vehicle for achieving sustainable development and engaging the private sector in implementing the SDGs, especially on renewable energy.