The 132nd Assembly of the Inter-Parliamentary Union (IPU-132) entered its closing session in Hanoi on Wednesday after five days of working, with the adoption of the Hanoi Declaration on “The Sustainable Development Goals: Turning Words into Action.”
At the session, IPU-132 President Nguyen Sinh Hung, who is also chairman of the Vietnamese National Assembly, announced the passage of the Resolution on “Cyber Warfare: A Serious Threat to Global Peace and Security” of the Standing Committee for Peace and International Security.
He also announced the adoption of the Resolution on “Shaping New Mechanisms on Water Resources Management, Promoting Parliamentary Action on Water and Sanitation” of the Standing Committee on Sustainable Development, Finance and Trade; and the Resolution on “International Law as It Relates to National Sovereignty, Non-intervention in the Internal Affairs of States and Human Rights” of the Standing Committee on Democracy and Human Rights.
In his closing speech, IPU President Saber Chowdhury affirmed that 2015 is a defining year for the future of the world in the next 20 years, so parliaments worldwide need to stay united in the global IPU mechanism.
The session also passed the Hanoi Declaration, which said in its beginning part that “despite global advances in technology, health, knowledge, and material wealth, long-standing economic and social disparities are increasing, to the detriment of the whole planet, with progress continuing to elude many the world over.”
The declaration also said international commitments can only be met with strong political will, leadership, and national ownership.
It added the adoption of the new post-2015 development agenda and its sustainable development goals in September 2015 will afford a unique opportunity to meet global challenges, using a universal, integrated approach that will apply to all countries and link poverty eradication to sustainable development.
The declaration reaffirmed the vision of people-centered sustainable development based on the realization of all human rights to eradicate poverty in all its forms and eliminate inequalities, thus empowering all individuals to exercise their full potential.
This requires conditions of peace and security, in full observance of the Charter of the United Nations and international law, it said, adding that a people-centered approach entails environmental justice: the planet and all its ecosystems must be treated as common assets for the whole of humanity to enjoy now and in the future.
Human well-being must be the driver of all policies for sustainable development, the declaration said.
It also stressed that “all government institutions must be representative and accessible to all. Cultural differences should be respected, and home-grown approaches to sustainable development employed. All people, regardless of gender, race, culture, religion and health status, must be empowered to work cooperatively for peace and the common good.”
“As parliamentarians, we must support efforts to reach the new goals in ways that respect each country’s national specificities. Our responsibility is clear: to hold governments accountable for the goals they have subscribed to, and to make sure that enabling laws are passed and budgets adopted,” the declaration said.
The declaration concluded, “We are profoundly grateful to the Inter-Parliamentary Union, our world organization, for raising our awareness of the Sustainable Development Goals and for making our voices heard at the United Nations. We will continue to look to the IPU for support in our efforts to attain the sustainable development goals.”