Region: Americas

Delegation hosted by Foreign Affairs Committee Chair Yolanda Ferrer Gomez.jpg

UK delegation receive a unique insight into Cuban politics and society

From 16 to 21 September 2018, a UK parliamentary delegation visited Cuba with the aim of further strengthening bilateral relations, including new opportunities for trade and cooperation, and to see how recent national developments were changing the country and its people.  In Havana and visiting rural areas, the delegation gained a good understanding of the effect of the long-standing US embargo on everyday people’s lives and how this unnecessarily limits progress in Cuba and is detrimental to the everyday lives of Cuban people.

Delegation visiting the Latin American School of Medicine.jpg

Cuba: vibrant culture & huge potential, but slow change

The visit provided us with a great opportunity to learn about political, economic and social aspects of Cuba and I was especially struck by two or three things.  The first was the exceptional cultural richness in Cuban society.  The second was how little change seemed to have occurred since the death of Fidel Castro.  Lastly, I remember impressive examples of bio-tech, medical research and drug development with pharmaceuticals being an areas where Cuba where there should be scope for British investment or joint ventures.

Delegation with Mark Menzies MP

Visit by Uruguayan Speaker consolidates close bilateral relations

From 18-20 June, BGIPU hosted the Speaker of the Uruguayan House of Representatives, Mr Jorge Gandini, for a 3 day programme at Westminster. Mr Gandini was accompanied by his party colleague Mr Gustavo Penades MP and Mr Roberto Chiazzaro MP, Member of the ruling Frente Amplio Party. The visit reinforced the already close relationship between the two countries and showed how helpful and important regular personal contact remains in the field of parliamentary diplomacy.

womenSpeakers.jpg

Women parliamentary leaders to work for more inclusive politics

The 12th Summit of Women Speakers of Parliament, organized jointly by the IPU and the Chamber of Deputies of Bolivia, will bring together the most senior women parliamentary leaders to address gender issues in parliaments, and explore avenues for more inclusive political institutions where every voice counts.  The Summit will be held on 25-26 April in Cochabamba, Bolivia, one of the few countries to have achieved gender parity in Parliament and enacted specific legislation to combat violence against women in politics.

WomenSpeak1.jpg

Call for zero tolerance towards sexism, racism & violence in parliament

Female parliamentarians worldwide call for immediate reforms to stop sexism, harassment and violence against women in parliaments. This includes urging all parliaments to set concrete targets and deadlines to achieve equal representation of women and men.  Taking part in the 12th Summit of Women Speakers of Parliament on 25-26 April, women MPs urged the Inter-Parliamentary Union (IPU) to lead global reform actions to end all forms of harassment in parliament.

Deputy Speaker Rt Hon Lindsay Hoyle MP welcoming delegation to Parliament

BGIPU hosts historic visit from Cuba

In the run-up to the much anticipated elections in Cuba in early 2018, BGIPU hosted a historic visit by a Cuban parliamentary delegation from 27th November to 1st December. Given many members of the delegation had academic and/or medical backgrounds, the focus of the programme that stretched over three days in Westminster and two days in Reading/Oxford was on education and health.

The UK was represented at the 4th IPU Conference of Yopung Parliamentarains by Daniella Rowley MP and Ranil Jayawardena MP.JPG

Young MPs call for greater youth participation

Young MPs from 51 countries have defined a youth-centred action plan that promotes inclusive democratic and socioeconomic policies for all.  More than 120 young men and women MPs attended the Inter-Parliamentary Union’s (IPU) Fourth Global Conference of Young Parliamentarians in Ottawa, Canada on 17-18 November adopting a united approach to end exclusion and marginalization of young people.  The UK was represented by Danielle Rowley MP and Ranil Jayawardena MP. 

peru2.JPG

UK delegation to Peru builds crucial links with counterparts

A UK inter-parliamentary delegation visited Peru from 17 to 22 September 2017 with the key objectives of building a positive relationship with the country as a key Pacific Alliance state.  The visit gave Members of the UK Parliament the opportunity to strengthen connections between our two parliaments and included very positive meetings with the Speaker of the Congress, the parliamentary friendship group and a number of congressional committees and senior Government representatives.  The delegation also travelled outside the capital to Cusco.

peru4.JPG

Key perspectives on social issues in Peru from UK visit

During its recent visit to Peru the UK delegation looked at the impact of a range of social issues in Peru.  This included measures and social models to ensure the inclusion of people with disabilities in Peru.  The delegation also met with the Minister for Women’s Affairs to discuss womens rights and domestic abuse and heard about efforts to achieve justice for past abuse of indigenous peoples through forced sterilsation in the 1990s.  There was also discussion of the Ombudsman network designed to tackle human rights issues in the country.  

afircaHOms2.jpg

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.