Parliaments of Central and Eastern Europe and Central Asia met to discuss the next steps in implementing the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). The seminar, which took place in Budapest on 23-24 February and was co-organized by IPU and the Hungarian National Assembly, was a follow-up to previous meetings that had called for concrete parliamentary action in key areas, such as environmental risk and climate change.
News in brief
Speakers of Parliaments from South Asia met to discuss the implementation of the SDGs in the region and further defined the opportunities and challenges facing South Asian parliaments in working to implement the SDGs.
The world’s MPs have called for decisive actions to stem the serious decline in the health of the oceans. The theme of this year’s Parliamentary Hearing at the United Nations in New York, which took place from 13-14 February, was A world of blue: Preserving the oceans, safeguarding the planet, ensuring human well-being in the context of the 2030 Agenda.
The 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development was adopted in September 2015. But sustainable development cannot be achieved while half the population—women and girls—are legally discriminated against.
Terrorism is one of the biggest challenges of our time. Even though the United Nations and IPU have passed several resolutions, all of which set out a clear role for parliaments, there have been gaps in implementation.
At a seminar co-organized by IPU and the Parliament of Tanzania, parliamentarians learned how they could help national efforts to improve women’s, children’s and adolescents’ health. They were briefed on the core parliamentary prerogatives they could use to spearhead action on health; Tanzania's key commitments on health in the context of the SDGs; how to address the root causes of maternal, neonatal and child mortality, especially among the most vulnerable and marginalized populations; and budget advocacy, allocation and oversight.
The contribution of young people and their participation in decision-making is necessary if we are to eradicate poverty. That was one of the key points made by members of the IPU Forum of Young Parliamentarians at the United Nations ECOSOC Global Youth Forum, held this year on The role of youth in poverty eradication and promoting prosperity in a changing world.
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".
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.
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.