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News in brief

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News in brief
IPU President Saber Chowdhury and Chairman of The Nippon Foundation Yohei Sasakawa at the launch of the 2017 Global Appeal.

IPU helps to combat discrimination against people affected by leprosy

The Global Appeal 2017 to End Stigma and Discrimination against People Affected by Leprosy was launched on 30 January in New Delhi by the Nippon Foundation with IPU’s support. The Appeal, endorsed by the IPU Executive Committee, emphasizes that solutions to the challenges faced by people with leprosy must be "firmly embedded in human rights" and urges all parliaments to "promote and enforce non-discriminatory laws and policies".
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Participants at the workshop organized by IPU.

IPU steps up cooperation with the Parliament of Djibouti

IPU delegation, comprising parliamentarians from France and Burkina Faso, conducted a needs assessment mission to the Parliament of Djibouti to examine the functioning of the parliament and identify strategic areas of cooperation to strengthen the institution. The visit also included a day-long workshop with the administration of the parliament aimed at exploring the challenges and making recommendations for enhanced efficiency in parliamentary work.
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Martin Chungong, IPU Secretary General, and H.E. Mr. Naci Koru, Permanent Representative of Turkey to Geneva.

IPU Secretary General welcomes new Turkish Ambassador

H.E. Mr. Naci Koru, incoming Permanent Representative of Turkey to Geneva, paid a courtesy call on IPU Secretary General Martin Chungong on 25 January. Mr. Koru and Mr. Chungong discussed the strong cooperation between the Turkish Parliament and IPU, and expressed the hope of furthering such cooperation.
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IPU welcomes peaceful end of crisis in The Gambia

The Inter-Parliamentary Union (IPU) is pleased the crisis in The Gambia was peacefully resolved following the departure of former President Yahya Jammeh. Mr. Jammeh left the country over the weekend after 22 years in power and went into exile in Equatorial Guinea.
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2017 Parliamentary Hearing at the UN will focus on oceans

The 2017 Parliamentary Hearing at the United Nations will focus on SDG 14 of the new Sustainable Development Goals: the conservation and sustainable use of oceans. A World of Blue: Preserving the oceans, safeguarding the planet, ensuring human well-being in the context of the 2030 Agenda will bring together parliamentarians, experts and UN officials and will make recommendations to restore the oceans to health.
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Committee on the Human Rights of Parliamentarians to meet

In the course of their duties, MPs sometimes face human rights violations, and the IPU Committee on the Human Rights of Parliamentarians is the only international mechanism with the remit to protect them. The Committee is meeting in Geneva from
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New Year's message

IPU Secretary General, Martin Chungong, and IPU President, Saber Chowdhury look back at 2016 and at the challenges ahead in 2017. Last year saw parliaments positioning themselves to advance an ambitious new development agenda. The crises that took place in 2016 will mean that this year will be a busy one for parliaments on development, and peace and security.
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Members of the Kenyan Senate attending the seminar.

Kenya: IPU’s gender-sensitive parliament toolkit put into practice

The Kenyan Parliament was the first to use IPU’s new toolkit on evaluating the gender sensitivity of parliaments. The toolkit is an outcome of the Plan of Action for Gender-Sensitive Parliaments adopted in 2012 by the 127th IPU Assembly. It is designed to help parliaments assess themselves on criteria such as women’s representation, the parliamentary culture and the ability to deliver on gender equality. It also assists them in determining how parliaments can be transformed into gender-sensitive institutions.
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GPEDC calls for more parliamentary oversight in national and international commitments

Public-private partnerships (PPPs) and other national and international commitments should be submitted to parliaments for review. This was one of the actions called for by parliamentarians attending the Parliamentary Forum at the Second High-Level Meeting of the Global Partnership for Effective Development Cooperation (GPEDC).
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Discussing action on climate change.

World’s MPs gather in Marrakech for Climate Change Conference

The Parliamentary Meeting at COP 22 held in Marrakech showed that parliamentarians everywhere are aware of the need to take concrete action on climate change, in particular as it concerns legislating for the nationally determined contributions (NDCs), transition to renewable energy and transfer of technologies.
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Participants at the Regional Seminar on the SDGs.

Parliaments from South America and the Caribbean mobilize around the SDGs

A Regional Seminar on the SDGs organized by IPU and the Latin American Parliament (Parlatino) provided a platform for MPs to exchange ideas about the opportunities and challenges associated with achieving the SDGs. The parliamentarians discussed how parliaments can effectively engage in policymaking to facilitate the implementation of the SDGs in the region and their own countries.
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IPU President Saber Chowdhury and Speaker of Parliament, Ms. Maja Gojkovic.

Serbia celebrates 125th anniversary of IPU membership

On 5 December, IPU President Saber Chowdhury paid an official visit to Serbia at the invitation of the Speaker of Parliament, Ms. Maja Gojkovic, to participate in celebrations to mark the Parliament’s 125th anniversary of its membership of the IPU. The Serbian Parliament was one of the first Members of the IPU, having joined soon after the Organization’s inception, in 1891.
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Martin Chungong and Ms. Gerda Verbung, Coordinator of SUN.

IPU Secretary General renews commitment to fighting malnutrition

Malnutrition affects billions of people throughout the world, killing around three million children annually, according to UNICEF. The Scaling Up Nutrition (SUN) movement was set up to respond to this crisis, with a mission to eliminate malnutrition by 2030. IPU Secretary General Martin Chungong is one of the 29 global leaders appointed by UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon to shape SUN's efforts to eradicate malnutrition. On 17 November, Mr. Chungong met with Ms. Gerda Verbung, Coordinator of SUN, to discuss how to translate the collaboration between the two institutions into action.
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IPU participates in Geneva Peace Week

How can countries ensure that peace, once established, is sustainable? And what can be done about inequality, which, if allowed to persist, can be a threat to peace?
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IPU concerned about detained Turkish MPs

The Inter-Parliamentary Union (IPU) is concerned about the recent arrests and detention of parliamentarians from the People’s Democratic Party (HDP) in Turkey. The Organization is particularly worried by the allegations that these MPs may have been targeted in response to
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IPU and CERN to work together for peace

The heads of IPU and CERN (the European Organization for Nuclear Research) signed a cooperation agreement that aims to promote initiatives for peace and intercultural dialogue; facilitate exchanges between the scientific community and parliamentarians; and raise parliamentarians’ awareness of the
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Martin Changing speaking to the National Assembly of Benin

IPU Secretary General calls for ongoing efforts to strengthen democracy in Benin

IPU Secretary General Martin Chungong was invited to address the opening ceremony of the second regular session of the National Assembly of Benin by the Speaker, Mr. Houngbédji, who is committed to strengthening cooperation between the Parliament and the IPU.
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IPU President Saber Chowdhury in Turkey

Statement by the IPU President during his visit to Ankara

I am pleased to be in Ankara today, at the invitation of Mr. Ismail Kahraman, Speaker of the Grand National Assembly of Turkey. We have had substantive and productive discussions, and I very much look forward to our cooperation ahead
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Martin Chungong addressing the Presidents of the African and Arab Parliaments.

IPU Secretary General congratulates Egyptian Parliament on its 150th anniversary

IPU Secretary General Martin Chungong congratulated the Egyptian Parliament on its 150th anniversary and called on all political stakeholders to reflect in this historical moment on the need to build a stronger and more democratic parliament. Addressing a ceremony in
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IPU Secretary General welcomes new Ambassadors from Bulgaria, Israel and Togo

In a round of courtesy visits with new Permanent Representatives to the United Nations in Geneva, IPU Secretary General Martin Chungong met with Ambassadors Deyana Kostadinova of Bulgaria, Aviva Raz Shechter of Israel and Yackoley Johnson of Togo. “I am
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