Human Rights
In this section:
Committee on Human Rights of Parliamentarians
Taking a stance on human rights issues
Parliamentary work on human rights
Reconciliation in post-conflict situations
Partnerships and instruments
Related sections:
Promoting democracy
Partnership between men and women
Cooperation with the UN
Peace and security
Sustainable development
What is the IPU?


  Promoting and defending human rights

quote Democracy is founded on the primacy of the law and the exercise of human rights. In a democratic State, no one is above the law and all are equal before the law. unquote
Universal Declaration on Democracy
Human rights of parliamentarians The protection and promotion of human rights are among the main goals of the Inter-Parliamentary Union. Article 1 of the Organization's Statutes defines human rights as an essential factor leading to democracy and development.

Parliament is the State institution representing the people and through which it participates in the management of public affairs. It therefore bears a special responsibility in promoting and ensuring respect for human rights. The IPU helps parliaments and their members to live up to this responsibility in two ways.

First, the IPU strengthens parliaments’ action, notably through their human rights committees, in areas such as legislation, oversight and adoption of budgets for the promotion and protection of fundamental freedoms. Second, by contributing to their concrete protection and redress when they are at risk, the IPU ensures that individual members of parliament enjoy their own human rights.

A detailed presentation of the IPU's work to promote human rights worldwide is accessible through the links listed below.
red cubeIPU Committee on the Human Rights of Parliamentarians. Established in 1976, the Committee has gained worldwide recognition as a unique and authoritative mechanism for protection of members of parliament against violations of their fundamental rights.   [ More ... ]
red cubeTaking a stance on human rights issues. Through its statutory and specialized events, the IPU channels and expresses the voice of the parliamentary community on topical human rights questions.   [ More ... ]
red cubeParliamentary work on human rights. The IPU aims to assist parliaments in making human rights a reality for everyone. It also ensures that parliamentarians understand human rights and put human rights promotion and protection at the centre of their legislative and oversight work, including through parliamentary human rights committees.    [ More ... ]
red cubeSetting the course for reconciliation in post-conflict situations. Parliaments have an important role to play in responding to the legacy of abuse in the aftermath of conflicts and in setting the course for reconciliation initiatives. Vital as it is, parliamentary contribution often poses daunting challenges.   [ More ... ]
red cubePartnerships, international human rights norms and instruments. The IPU cooperates with a range of national, regional and international partners to promote and protect the human rights standards enshrined in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and other international instruments.   [ More ... ]