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
In an end-of-year message, reflecting upon increased threats to democracy in the world, the President and Secretary General of the IPU maintain that in promoting democracy and strong parliaments the work of the IPU is more important than ever. They said that parliaments are becoming ever more crucial in translating the peoples' aspirations for peace, development and prosperity into reality. They looked forward to the year ahead to make democracy work better for people in accordance with the IPU Strategy.
Human rights abuses against parliamentarians reached a new high in 2017, according to IPU statistics. Parliamentarians from Cambodia, Maldives, Turkey and Venezuela alone, where the political situation has been worsening in recent times, account for 35% of the cases. Cases of abuses against women MPs have also reached a record number this year, having tripled since 2014. The IPU’s annual review reports that, in 2017 the Organization’s Committee on the Human Rights of Parliamentarians examined the cases of 507 MPs in 41 countries.
An international gathering of MPs has called for renewed momentum to conclude international trade negotiations that foster sustainable development. The parliamentarians urged all WTO Members to show flexibility and the willingness to compromise in order to conclude this trade round that has already lasted too long. Over 500 participants, including some 220 MPs from 56 countries, attended the Parliamentary Conference on the WTO from 9-10 December in Buenos Aires, which preceded the 11th WTO Ministerial Conference
The Annual General Meeting of the British Group of the Inter-Parliamentary Union was convened on Wednesday 6 December 2017 in the IPU Room at the Palace of Westminster to adopt the 2017 Annual Report and elect the Executive Committee for 2017/18. The AGM was presided over by the Speaker aof the House of Commons, The Rt Hon John Bercow MP in his capacity as Honorary President of the Group.
A landmark resolution calling for parliaments to take all legal and policy measures to achieve universal health coverage (UHC) by 2030 has been adopted by the world’s parliaments gathered in Serbia for the 141st IPU Assembly. The resolution urges parliaments to put in place effective UHC legislation to ensure that the right to public health and medical care is guaranteed for all in law and in practice, without discrimination.
Over 1700 parliamentarians and UN and civil society partners from around the world will meet in Belgrade, Serbia, from 13 to 17 October for the 141st IPU Assembly. With the theme of Strengthening international law, MPs will also discuss the latest developments to improve gender equality, empower young people, defend MPs’ human rights, and achieve universal health coverage.
Following a successful visit by Lithuanian parliamentarians to the UK parliament last year, a BGIPU delegation visited Lithuania from 23rd to 27th September. The delegation was led by BGIPU and Lithuania APPG Chair, Rt Hon John Whittingdale OBE MP. The visit coincided with the centenary celebrations of the establishment of UK-Lithuanian diplomatic relations, and the visit marked the movement towards a new chapter in these strong bilateral ties.
Speaking on the International Day of Democracry in a call for inclusive parliaments, IPU President, Gabriela Cuevas Barron noted that in current times it is not democracy as a system of values, principles and governance that is being questioned. It is the approach to the practice of democracy and the institutions established, often centuries ago, which need to be reviewed and made more effective for the benefit of the people. It is clear that that democracy must be redesigned for the challenges of the 21st century.