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National Assembly Chairwoman Nguyen Thi Kim Ngan attended the 137th General Assembly of the Inter-Parliamentary Union
4/11/2017 18:46' Send Print
National Assembly Chairwoman Nguyen Thi Kim Ngan delivers a speech at the plenary session of the 137th General Assembly of the Inter-Parliamentary Union (IPU-137). Photo: VNA

In his opening speech, Russian President Vladimir Putin said that against the current backdrop, parliamentary diplomacy is in such high demand, as it can consolidate trust between states and nations and help find compromise solutions to pressing international and regional problems. According to him “it is in our shared interest to promote a peaceful, creative and balanced agenda, to aspire to reduce strife, prevent the emergence of new separating lines, including ethnic and religious ones, jointly move towards shaping a more just and solid architecture of international relations.”

IPU President Saber Chowdhury, in turn, expressed sincere thanks to the Russian Federation Council for hosting the IPU-137 Assembly and asked parliamentarians to seek measures for current affairs, and discuss a new agenda, promoting cultural pluralism and peace inter-faith and inter-ethnic dialogue.

Within the frameworks of the IPU-137, at the general debate on “Promoting cultural pluralism and peace through inter-faith and inter-ethnic dialogue," on 15 October, Vietnamese National Assembly Chairwoman Nguyen Thi Kim Ngan delivered a speech.

National Assembly Chairwoman Nguyen Thi Kim Ngan emphasized that the tremendous advances in science and technology brought different political regimes, economies, societies, cultures and religions closer together for mutual development. On the other hand, the world is facing many complicated issues such as climate change, poverty, non-traditional security, nationalism, and extremism, racial and religious conflicts.

In that spirit, she highly valued the theme of the 137th IPU General Assembly, whichwas the continuation of the Quebec City Declaration on Citizenship, Identity and Linguistic and Cultural Diversity In A Globalized World adopted by the IPU in 2012. This document is in line with the 2001 Universal Declaration on Cultural Diversity of the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO). She pointed out that it was significant that the theme was debated in a country with age-old and great culture where national unity and the aspiration for peace against injustice has been lit up and upheld by the October Revolution 100 years ago.

The Chairwoman made known that Vietnam is a multi-ethnic, multi-religious nation. In Vietnam, the right to equality between peoples, religions is affirmed in all the Constitution. In 2013, the National Assembly of Vietnam adopted a new constitution, which reaffirms that Viet Nam is a unified country where different ethnicities co-exist in harmony. The National Assembly Chairwoman also pointed out that the State of Vietnam pursues always policies to support ethnic minorities in order to create conditions for ethnic minorities to develop equally and systematically narrow the development gap between ethnic groups. All religions are equal before the law; religious beliefs are respected and facilitated to develop.

To promote culture pluralism and peace through religious and national dialogue, National Assembly Chairwoman Nguyen Thi Kim Ngan made some proposals at the Plenary Session. She called on the IPU to encourage member parliaments to bring into full play their roles in law making and improving legal frameworks to ensure equality of ethnic groups and religions before the law; create legal foundation to firmly preserve and promote national culture, religious freedom and harmoniously handle the interests of people, community and country in development. At the same time, efforts should be made to supervise the Governments’ implementation of policies aimed at protecting the people’s interests, ensuring fair and equal treatment to people from all walks of life, ethnic groups, religions and cultures, thus helping foster national unity. In addition, it is necessary to review and eliminate discriminatory laws and regulations in order to ensure the participation of people from all walks of life in the country’s political, social and economic life.

The National Assembly Chairwoman also suggested the IPU to strengthen cooperation with UN agencies, international organizations and all member parliaments in order to support initiatives and actions by legislators for the purpose of peace, concord and friendship between ethnicities, religions and cultures within or among nations.

On the sidelines of the General Assembly, National Assembly Chairwoman Nguyen Thi Kim Ngan met with the President of IPU Saber Chowdhury; President of the Russian Federation Council Valentina Ivanovna Matviyenko, President of the Islamic Parliament of IranAli Ardeshir Larijani, Speaker of the South Korean National Assembly Chung Sye-Kyun; and Vice President of Chinese National People's Congress Zhang Ping.

Synthesized from VNA