|Security and Co-operation in the Mediterranean|
Working for disarmament has been a constant concern of the Inter-Parliamentary Union since its creation.
The IPU was among the first to call for international regulations on the conventional weapons trade; it held an Inter-Parliamentary Symposium on Disarmament relating to Conventional Weapons in 1985 in Mexico City, and in 1990 it organized a Conference in Bonn which evaluated the impact of rapidly changing international relations on disarmament and security.
Disarmament questions are regularly placed on the agendas of IPU statutory Conferences, which have discussed, among others, such important issues as a global register of arms transfers, peace in the Middle East, nuclear non-proliferation, protection of minorities as a prerequisite for stability, security and peace, Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty and ban on nuclear weapons testing, as well as fight against terrorism.
As a political organization whose primary goal is peace, the Inter-Parliamentary Union gives special priority to the elimination of conflict situations through political negotiation. It reacts to crises which can affect world or regional security, and monitors certain conflict situations on an ongoing basis.
The Middle East has been on the IPU's agenda for several decades. Statutory Inter-Parliamentary Conferences have addressed the Middle East issue on several occasions. In 1987, a six-member Committee on the Middle East was set up to promote direct contacts between Arab and Israeli delegations and to promote parliamentary action in support of the peace process.
A special ad hoc Committee has been assigned the task of monitoring the situation in Cyprus.
One of the crisis situations of particular concern for the Union is the former Yugoslavia. The Union has condemned violations of basic human rights and external displacement of population, called for urgent action and supported humanitarian efforts, strongly advocating a negotiated settlement of the conflict. In April 1998 the Union adopted an emergency resolution on the situation in Kosovo.
The IPU carried out a parliamentary mission to Bosnia and Herzegovina, Croatia and the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia in July-August 1994. In its report, the mission recommended that IPU members support the parliaments in these countries, including through technical assistance.
Security and Co-operation in the Mediterranean
The Union carries out an extensive programme of activities focused on the Mediterranean which have developed into a full CSCM process since 1992. Take a detailed look at this programme by visiting a special page devoted to it on this site.
Three Inter-Parliamentary Conferences on Security and Co-operation in the Mediterranean were already organized, in Malaga (Spain) in June 1992, Valletta (Malta) in November 1995 and in Marseille (France) in March-April 2000.
In addition, the Union has set up a permanent mechanism for dialogue and negotiation among all the Mediterranean partners in the form of twice-yearly meetings during statutory Inter-Parliamentary Conferences.