|Department of Public Information • News and Media Division • New York|
Sixty-eighth General Assembly
86th Meeting (AM)
General Assembly Adopts Resolution Encouraging Stronger Cooperation
with National Parliaments in Peace, Security
Welcoming actions by the Inter-Parliamentary Union (IPU) to pursue a more systematic engagement with the United Nations, the General Assembly, through a consensus resolution, encouraged both parties to work closely in various fields, in particular, peace and security, economic and social development, international law, and human rights and gender issues.
Abderrazzak Laassel ( Morocco), introducing the resolution, said the current draft included modifications based on the Secretary-General’s report on the matter (document A/68/827). Those changes were meant to strengthen not only the institutional arrangement between the United Nations and national parliaments, but both parties’ continued involvement in mobilizing action towards the achievement of the Millennium Development Goals.
The text also encouraged parliamentary input and contribution to the design of the post 2015-development agenda. Furthermore, support should be given to legislative representatives in the main bodies of the Organization, with an aim to link those parliamentarians to United Nations activities. Member States were invited to consider ways to work regularly with the Union in facilitating a parliamentary component to major United Nations conferences, so that a legislative perspective could inform such proceedings.
Further, the resolution recommended that a new cooperation agreement between them be drawn up to reflect progress and developments over the past years and to place the institutional relationship on a strong footing.
Abdelwahad Radi, IPU President, said that the body, with a membership of 164 national parliaments, would soon be celebrating its 125th anniversary. It had come into being through a quest for peace and democracy — as an alternative to war — and thus was a precursor of the United Nations. The relationship between the two had been formerly cemented in 1996 through the signature of a cooperation agreement.
Amid developments seemingly beyond its control, the Organization must remain at the centre of global governance, he said. “It was not the intention of the IPU to tell the United Nations what to do,” he stressed. Its goal was to ensure that parliaments were aware of what was taking place here before the deal was sealed, and that they held debates among themselves and with their Government representatives.
Once a decision was made, on the post-2015 agenda or other matters, implementation must follow, he said, stressing the role of parliaments in holding Governments to account for their commitments. The Union had taken two major initiatives to bring its relationship with the United Nations to the next level. The establishment of a parliamentary Standing Committee on United Nations Affairs as a central coordinating body should help mainstream the United Nations agenda through IPU and its member parliaments. The Fourth World Conference of Speakers of Parliament, to be held next year, would provide an opportunity to galvanize political will for the new global agenda.
Italy’s delegate was among several speakers who highlighted the resolution’s emphasis on the need for cooperation between the United Nations Entity for Gender Equality and the Empowerment of Women (UN-Women) and IPU. In her country, women accounted for 29 per cent of parliament seats, with its Speaker also a woman.
Mexico’s delegate stressed the importance of greater participation of parliamentarians in addressing global governance issues, while Romania’s counterpart said there were still many measures that could be taken to achieve greater complementarity and synergy between the United Nations and IPU.
Also speaking today were the representatives of Uruguay, United States, Spain, Argentina, Cameroon, Viet Nam, Chile and Kazakhstan.
The General Assembly will reconvene on a date to be determined.
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