Through its programme of activities, the BGIPU seeks to engage Parliamentarians in key global issues and works to expand awareness and understanding of foreign relations and the contribution to be made by the UK Parliament to consolidate parliamentary democracy worldwide.
Here you can read the reports of our activities, including our Outward Delegations, IPU conferences and events and inward visits to Westminster.
You can search for specific reports by using keywords, themes, categories or date using the fields on the right.
You can also view our work by geographical location here
From 28th May to 1st June BGIPU Vice-Chair Rt Hon John Whittingdale OBE MP led a cross-party delegation of six MPs to Belarus, the second only since Independence. The programme was busy and varied, including meetings with counterparts, government representatives, and visits to manufacturing facilities, the Opera House, Nesvizh Castle and meetings civil society. The delegation left with the impression that Belarus is a country somewhat overlooked by the UK both politically and economically and were determined to change that.
Belarus is a country of contradictions. On this visit I had expected to be see a drab, dour and austere country, redolent of so many east European countries after the fall of the Berlin Wall. What I found was an attractive country and a well maintained and occasionally picturesque capital city. There is, however, another side to Belarus, which at first glance is not so apparent, but is very real. Below the ‘skin’ of Belarus, there is a country that is still a presidential dictatorship.
A BGIPU delegation, led by our Chair Nigel Evans MP, visited Bosnia & Herzegovina during the Whitsun Recess (27th May – 1st June) to meet with parliamentary counterparts. This visit consolidated the close links between the UK Parliament and the various Parliaments of Bosnia and Herzegovina, and was an important precursor to BGIPU’s upcoming International Seminar on the Western Balkans in September.
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.
Globally, threats to journalists are the highest they have been in ten years. Following a landmark FCO conference over summer, the UK Parliament will host an International Parliamentary Seminar on Media Freedom under the auspices of the BGIPU. The Chair of the British Group of the IPU, Rt Hon John Whittingdale MP, has invited members of parliament from across the world to take part in this event at the Palace of Westminster in London from Monday 9th September to Wednesday 11th September 2019 and has hosted initial events.
Parliamentary dialogue and diplomacy were at the forefront of 140th IPU Assembly in Doha, Qatar, as over 800 MPs from 160 countries convened in the world’s biggest platform for global parliamentary exchange. In the final Doha Declaration endorsed at the Assembly, MPs from national parliaments underlined the critical role of education to enhance peace, security and the rule of law as well as support democracy and human rights.
At the 140th IPU Assembly in Doha, Qatar, the global parliamentary community strongly condemned human rights violations against MPs worldwide. At the Assembly, the IPU Committee on the Human Rights of Parliamentarians, the only international body with an exclusive remit to support MPs in danger, recommended action in the cases of 187 parliamentarians in a dozen countries whose human rights have been violated.
Over 1600 parliamentarians, UN partners and experts from around the world will meet in Doha, Qatar, for the 140th IPU Assembly from 6 to 10 April. Under the overarching theme of education for peace, the Assembly will also consider ways in which parliaments can boost gender equality- particularly in the region, take measures to counter terrorism, promote human rights and invest in renewable energy. The Qatar Shura Council will host delegates from around 160 countries including 80 Speakers of Parliament, 40 Deputy Speakers and over 800 MPs.