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News in brief

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News in brief

IPU brings Parliaments to World Investment Forum

The 2030 Agenda and its Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) constitute the most ambitious UN plan ever to counter poverty, inequality, environmental degradation, and conflict. To be successful, the plan implies sweeping policy reforms at all levels as well as massive
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Session at the UN General Assembly

UNGA73: Mobilizing parliamentary support for health and nutrition

Bridging the gap between global commitments and local realities, the IPU was at the opening of the 73 rd UN General Assembly (UNGA73) last week to help mobilize parliaments and MPs around UN events. Non-Communicable Diseases (NCDs), better nutrition, and access to health for women and children were at the top of the agenda.
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Report with IPU data on violence against women in politics presented at UNGA

United Nations Special Rapporteur on violence against women, its causes and consequences, Ms. Dubravka Šimonovic, will present her report to the 73 rd UN General Assembly (UNGA) on Friday 5 October. In the report, the Special Rapporteur analyses violence against women in politics, including in parliament, and makes recommendations on how to stop gender-based violence. The report draws extensively on IPU data, particularly a landmark IPU study in 2016 on the subject. On 16 October, the IPU will publish a new report on violence against women in European parliaments.
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A Tunisian teacher works with her students on March 8, 2011 in Tunis

SDGs as agents of change in the Arab world

Gender equality and good governance were the main themes discussed at the first Regional Seminar on the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and Gender Equality to take place in the North Africa Middle East region. Organized jointly by the IPU, the Arab IPU, and the House of Representatives of Egypt, the seminar was attended by MPs from 15 countries in the Library of Alexandria, Egypt last week.
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Maldives president

IPU welcomes peaceful elections in Maldives and urges smooth transition of power

The IPU congratulates opposition leader Ibrahim Mohamed Solih on his victory in Sunday's presidential election. Provisional results show he received 58 per cent of the vote, defeating incumbent Abdulla Yameen who was seeking re-election for a second five-year term. The IPU calls for the results to be confirmed as soon as possible to respect the will of the people.
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Bobbi Wine

IPU calls for arrests after torture of MPs Bobi Wine and Francis Zaake

Following the torture of Ugandan opposition MPs Robert Kyagulanyi Seentamu, known as Bobi Wine, and Francis Zaake, the IPU joins the Ugandan Parliament in urging the authorities to arrest the military officers involved, to respect due process and to conduct a fair trial for the MPs whose cases are pending. IPU official letters sent to the authorities in August asking for more information on the MPs have so far remained unanswered. The IPU has requested to send a trial observer to ensure that the MPs’ human rights are fully respected.
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Fawzia koofi

IPU urges Afghan authorities to give Fawzia Koofi a fair chance to run in elections

The IPU has not obtained evidence to support the decision of a special Afghan committee and the Independent Electoral Complaints Commission to bar MP Fawzia Koofi from standing in parliamentary elections scheduled for 20 October. Despite the IPU’s request in August, the Afghan authorities have not provided any facts to support their decision to exclude Fawzia Koofi on account of her alleged involvement in illegal armed groups.
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© Shen Hong/Xinhua

IPU and NPC of China intensify cooperation on SDGs

MPs from Ethiopia, Mauritius, Mozambique, Namibia, Pakistan, Sri Lanka and Tanzania met to discuss how parliaments can effectively facilitate the implementation of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) at a seminar that took place from 10-12 September in Beijing, China. The
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Djibouti women voters

Wind of change in Djibouti

Djibouti’s new legislature is making great efforts to become more representative of the country’s people. Elections in February changed the composition of the National Assembly with an intake of 60 per cent of new MPs. Women are better represented, making
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Venezuela MPs

IPU calls for Venezuelan authorities to allow parliamentary fact-finding mission

Long-standing efforts since 2013 to send a delegation of MPs to Venezuela have so far failed in the absence of clear authorization and cooperation from the country’s authorities. Following the ongoing repression of opposition MPs by the Venezuelan government, the
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Photo from the summit

Third South Asian Speakers’ Summit discusses green growth

Speakers of South Asian Parliaments agreed to a number of action points including: prioritizing green growth strategies and climate change adaptation; strengthening access to education; and promoting the social inclusion of marginalized, vulnerable groups and differently-abled people. The Speakers of Parliament of Afghanistan, Bhutan, India, Maldives, Pakistan and Sri Lanka met in Colombo from 11-12 July 2018 to discuss progress on the implementation of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) in their region. The focus of the meeting—the third of its kind—was on sustainable, equitable and green economic growth and on creating decent work for all, including young people and persons with disabilities.
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Whale made out of plastic at the UN High Level Political Forum, July 2018

Helping MPs to help achieve the Global Goals

With only 12 years to go before the deadline for the 2030 Global Goals, the IPU brought together MPs from North and South at the UN High Level Political Forum in New York from 9 to 18 July 2018. This year’s theme was linked to Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) 12 on consumption and production patterns. According to the UN, domestic material consumption is increasing worldwide, rising from 1.29 kg per dollar of GDP in 2000 to 1.41 kg in 2015. This level of consumption is not only draining finite resources but also causing environmental degradation and climate change.
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A prisoner looks out from prison cell of Lukyanivska prison in Kiev on July 6, 2018

Parliaments stand up for human rights

Parliaments around the world are increasingly prioritizing human rights and rightly so. Parliaments are uniquely positioned to close the gap between the work of UN human rights mechanisms and implementation at the national level. A recent report from the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights on parliaments’ contributions to the work of the Human Rights Council highlights some good practices to help parliaments better protect and promote human rights.
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Mexican polling booth

Mexican Parliament achieves gender parity

Last Sunday’s elections in Mexico resulted in gender parity in the Parliament: with almost all the results counted, there are 246 women (48.6%) and 254 men (51.2%) in the Chamber of Deputies and 65 women (50.78%) and 63 men (49.22%)
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Photo from the seminar

Georgia Parliament leads in implementing global goals in Eastern Europe

Georgia is among the countries at the forefront of implementing the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) in the Caucasus and Eastern Europe. The Government has established national indicators and targets to monitor progress. The Parliament plays a crucial role in achieving the targets through its oversight of the Government’s efforts and by ensuring that the most vulnerable populations are not left behind. The Parliament has also adopted the Open Government Partnership Declaration underlining its commitment to openness, transparency and citizen engagement.
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Nigeria youth

Nigeria brings in fresher faces to its Parliament

Young people are vastly under-represented in political decision-making. Although 51 per cent of the world’s population is under 30, young people under 30 make up less than 2 per cent of the world’s MPs. This is largely due to laws
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MPs commit to combating poverty and promoting health care

With only 12 years to go, members of parliament from Central and Eastern Europe and Central Asia met in Belgrade last week to discuss how they can accelerate the implementation of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) by 2030. They focused
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Participants at the technical briefing

Harnessing the power of parliaments to expand universal health coverage

What role can parliaments play in achieving universal health coverage and global health security? A vital one - according to a technical briefing co-organized by the World Health Organization (WHO) and the Inter-Parliamentary Union (IPU) at the 71 st World Health Assembly in Geneva.
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UN resolution strengthens the role of parliaments in global governance

The United Nations General Assembly has adopted its latest resolution on the interaction between the United Nations, parliaments and the IPU . The resolution, co-sponsored by over 90 UN Member States, reaffirms the commitment of all parties to continue efforts to bridge the democracy gap between the international agenda and its implementation at the national level. The resolution recognizes particularly the work of the IPU in mobilizing parliamentary action to implement the 2030 Sustainable Development Goals.
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Anwar Ibrahim and Mrs. Ibrahim at the IPU

IPU welcomes the release and full pardon of Anwar Ibrahim

The IPU welcomes the news of the release and full pardon of Dato Seri Anwar Ibrahim, the former Deputy Prime Minister of Malaysia. Mr. Anwar was released from prison today after being granted a full royal pardon. The IPU Committee on the Human Rights of Parliamentarians , which has been defending Mr. Anwar’s case since the 1990s, has consistently maintained that Mr. Anwar was the victim of an unfair trial and has lobbied intensively over the years for his release.
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