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
At the 139th Inter-Parliamentary Union (IPU) Assembly, the global parliamentary community expressed serious concerns about MP human rights violations worldwide including cases in Cambodia, Venezuela, Turkey, and Uganda. However, there was also good news from Malaysia and the Maldives. At this sitting, the committee took position on human rights violations of 295 MPs in 13 countries.
On 16 October 2018, during the 139th IPU Assembly in Geneva, there was a Special Session convened to mark the 70th anniversary of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR). This included the Launch of Handbook for Parliamentarians on Freedom of Expression for Parliaments and their members: Importance and scope of protection. Prior to the Assembly adopting a Declaration to mark the 70th anniversary of the UDHR, there was a video address by BGIPU Vice-Chair Ann Clwyd MP.
A new study by the IPU and PACE shows that acts of sexism, abuse and violence against women are widespread in parliaments across Europe. The findings reveal that 85 per cent of women MPs have suffered from psychological violence in parliament; women MPs under 40 are more likely to be harassed; female parliamentary staff endure more sexual violence than female MPs; and that the majority of parliaments don’t have mechanisms to enable women to speak out.
Over 1300 MPs and parliamentary staff from around the world will meet in Geneva for the 139th IPU Assembly from 14-18 October. Under the umbrella theme of science, technology and innovation, the Assembly will cover multiple subjects including fake news, sexism and harassment in parliaments, human rights, disarmament, counter-terrorism, the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), and migration.
On 21 and 22 February, the IPU and the United Nations, represented by the President of the General Assembly, will bring together 240 parliamentarians from nearly 40 countries, as well as ambassadors, representatives from UN organizations, and experts for their annual parliamentary hearing in New York. The hearing will focus on the emerging challenges to multilateralism.
The first Preparatory Committee for the Fifth Conference of Speakers was held in Geneva from 8 to 9 February 2019. The BGIPU Chair, Rt Hon John Whittingdale MP, is representing the Speaker of the House of Commons, Rt Hon John Bercow MP, on this Preparatory Committee. The Fifth World Conference of Speakers of Parliaments is scheduled to take place in 2020 and is expected to build on the outcomes from the previous sessions and further reinforce the parliamentary dimension of global governance.
The IPU Committee on the Human Rights of Parliamentarians has released its latest decisions after considering the cases of 417 MPs from 37 countries at a meeting in Geneva last week. The Committee, the only international body with a special remit to defend persecuted MPs, took decisions on 126 MPs, most of which concern opposition MPs in Venezuela.
The IPU expresses its grave concern about the escalating crisis in Venezuela. It reminds the authorities of their duty to guarantee the basic human rights of the people, including those of peaceful demonstration. The IPU continues to monitor carefully for any attacks against parliamentarians. The IPU appeals to all sides to intensify efforts, including meaningful dialogue, to find a peaceful and non-violent solution to the crisis, and to ensure humanitarian access for all Venezuelans.