Year: 2017


IPU launches petition for #StrongerDemocracies

The International Day of Democracy 2017 marks the 20th anniversary of IPU’s Universal Declaration on Democracy and the 10th anniversary of the International Day of Democracy. These two critical milestones offer an occasion to reaffirm our shared commitment to protect and promote democracy.  The International Day of Democracy is celebrated around the world on 15 September each year.  As part of this year’s IDD, the IPU has also launched a petition in support of stronger democracies.


IPU launches global campaign for stronger democracies

To mark the dual milestones this year of the 10th anniversary of the International Day of Democracy on 15 September and the 20th anniversary of the adoption of IPU’s Universal Declaration on Democracy, the IPU campaign, Get engaged now, calls for people to take action to strengthen democracy. Such actions can mean voting in elections, speaking out against human rights violations, opposing restrictive laws on freedom of expression and joining a civil society organization.

We are gearing up for the International Day of Democracy. © S_K_S (CC BY-NC-SA 2.0).jpg

IPU gearing up for the International Day of Democracy

Marking the 2017 International Day of Democracy (IDD) on 15 September, the IPU is celebrating two important milestones: the 10th anniversary of the IDD and the 20th anniversary of the Universal Declaration of Democracy. The IPU has placed this year’s IDD under the banner of the overall theme “In defence of democracy”.  On 8 September, the IPU will be launching an online petition in support of stronger democracies. The petition will be presented to political leaders from 173 parliaments and the United Nations.


Facilitating cooperation between parliaments on ICT projects

The IPU provides technical support to parliaments, including on information and communication technology (ICT) projects. Over the last few months, the IPU has worked with the Parliaments of Sri Lanka, Zambia and Vanuatu to set up digital repositories for their respective parliamentary libraries. The IPU hopes to replicate this experience-sharing in future projects. The cooperation between parliaments is not only building partnerships but changing the way effective parliamentary support is conceived.


IPU condemns military lockdown of Maldives Parliament

The IPU condemns, in the strongest possible terms, the military’s interference in the business of the Maldives parliament. The IPU Secretary General Martin Chungong and the IPU President Saber Chowdhury have called for calm and for the Parliament to be allowed to carry out its functions without intimidation. There are also increasing concerns at alleged violations of the rights of opposition MPs. The IPU Secretary General confirmed today that he will bring this matter before the IPU governing bodies at its Assembly in October.

13th Workshop of Parliamentary Scholars and Parliamentarians

The Thirteenth Workshop of Parliamentary Scholars and Parliamentarians took place from 29 to 30 July. It is part of a series of workshops co-sponsored by the IPU and the Centre for Legislative Studies at the University of Hull. At the workshops, researchers share findings that would be of practical use to parliamentarians.  Among the topics discussed with participants from 20 countries were the challenges of strengthening legislatures, public engagement in parliaments, corruption in legislatures and capacity building.

MPs from accross the world attend IPU meetings in New York in the margins of the UN HLPF.JPG

Growing number of MPs contribute to UN annual SDGs review

A record number of MPs from 36 parliaments participated in the 2017 High-Level Political Forum (HLPF) on sustainable development, from 10 to 19 July, in New York. The HLPF is the platform where governments and other stakeholders, including parliaments can monitor progress on the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). This year, 44 countries presented national progress reports.

UK MPs and Peers in New York for UN events on the SDGs.JPG

Vital parliamentarians work to support UN’s Global Goals

On 17 July 2017, on behalf of the BGIPU, Lord McConnell attended the IPU Parliamentary event at the UN High Level Political Forum on the SDGs. This coincided with a visit by members of the APPG on the UN Global Goals for Sustainable Development. In addition to the obvious scrutiny role of MPs to hold governments to account for delivery, the Global Goals provide real momentum for parliamentarians everywhere to insist upon accountability and pressurise governments for specific legislation and budgetary commitments.


BGIPU Members discuss priorities with UK Ambassadors

Taking advantage of the presence in London of British Ambassadors for the annual FCO Leadership Week, BGIPU arranged roundtable meetings on 12 July 2017 for MPs and Peers to discuss recent developments in key African and Latin American countries on our forward programme. This was a unique opportunity for parliamentarians to engage directly with the UK’s senior diplomatic representatives to receive updates on national priorities, hear recent developments in bilateral engagement and learn more about key regional trends.


IPU applauds Human Rights Council boost for cooperation with parliaments

On 23 June, the UN Human Rights Council adopted without a vote a resolution in support of stronger cooperation with parliaments.  The resolution encourages States to involve parliaments in all stages of the Council’s Universal Periodic Review (UPR), under which the Council examines the human rights situation of each UN Member State.  Welcoming this, the IPU said it looks forward to working ever more closely with UN human rights bodies in support of stronger ties between the Council and parliaments.